Local regulations may prompt flood insurance help
BATON ROUGE – Residents who have had homes or businesses damaged by the August flood may be required to meet certain building requirements before repairs start to reduce future flood damage, according to FEMA officials.
The National Flood Insurance Program Standard Flood Insurance Policy provides Increased Cost of Compliance coverage that may be available to help cover the costs of meeting those requirements depending on eligibility.
If residents are eligible, NFIP policy holders may receive up to $30,000 of ICC coverage to help pay the costs to bring their building into compliance in their area's floodplain ordinance. The coverage availability and payment limits are subject to the terms of the policy and maximum coverage limits, including all applicable NFIP rules.
There are four options for residents to comply with their area's floodplain management ordinance to reduce future flood damage. They include:
You may be eligible to file a claim for your ICC coverage in two instances:
When your community determines that your building is "substantially damaged," wherein the cost to repair or improve the structure exceeds its market value by a threshold amount adopted by law or ordinance. Community building officials are responsible for the issuance of substantial damage declarations.
1. When your community has a "repetitive loss" provision in its floodplain management ordinance and determines that your building was damaged by a flood two times in the past 10 years, where the cost of repairing the flood damage, on average, equaled or exceeded 25 percent of its market value at the time of each flood.
2. When your community has a "repetitive loss" provision in its floodplain management ordinance and determines that your building was damaged by a flood two times in the past 10 years, where the cost of repairing the flood damage, on average, equaled or exceeded 25 percent of its market value at the time of each flood.
If your community does determine that your building is substantially or repetitively damaged, a local official will explain the floodplain management ordinance provisions that you will have to meet. You may also want to consult with the local official before you make the final decision about which of the options to pursue.
Once your community has made its determination, contact your insurer or insurance agent to file an ICC claim. You should start getting estimates from contractors to take the necessary steps to FRED — floodproof, relocate, elevate or demolish.
When the work is completed, local officials will inspect it and issue a certificate of occupancy or a confirmation letter.
It's important to remember that only policyholders with substantially or repetitively flood-damaged buildings may be eligible for ICC coverage. ICC helps pay for the costs of meeting the floodplain management requirements adopted by law or ordinance in your community. Any item paid for in the original flood damage claim cannot be duplicated in the ICC payment.
For more information on ICC coverage, call your insurance company or agent, or call the NFIP toll-free at 800-427-4661. TDD# 800-427-5593.