Even though the severe thunderstorms that bulldozed parts of Mississippi departed days ago, those with destroyed or damaged property will spend weeks, maybe months, looking to replace or be reimbursed for what they lost.
Representatives of private insurers and the Mississippi Insurance Department have been on the streets in the state’s hardest-hit areas this week, looking to help those with damaged or destroyed homes, automobiles and other property. State Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney said insured losses could reach $100 million, and there could be a comparable amount of uninsured losses, too.
State officials estimate more than 870 homes were destroyed or heavily damaged statewide, and Chaney says there’s extensive damage to commercial buildings, especially in Tupelo. More than 2,000 claims have been filed statewide so far, and that number likely will grow.
But there are also many structures that suffered lesser damage, and State Farm spokesman Roszell Gadson said people first need to inspect the extent of their damage to see if a claim is worth pursuing. “If you have a $1,000 or $2,000 deductible and you have a broken window that’s going to cost only several hundred dollars to replace, you might not want to file a claim,” he said.
Policies vary on what they cover, which Gadson says is especially important because many carry strict coverage limits on higher-end household/personal items, like furs, firearms and jewelry.
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