UNION BEACH, N.J. - Homeowners affected by Hurricane Sandy are finding some of the biggest challenges they’re facing are with their insurance companies.
Representatives with the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance met with confused and angry homeowners at the relief center in Union Beach Wednesday.
Among them was John Gator whose home is one of five still standing on his block of 17.
“We had one adjustor come and tell us that we had $1,300 worth of damage with a $1,000 deductible and I complained and complained and complained," Gator told News/Talk WSB. "So we got another adjustor and now he brought it up to $24,000 but we have an estimate of $48,000."
So far nearly 800 requests for assistance have been received by the insurance commissioner’s office since the storm hit. That number is up from a total of 500 that were received after Tropical Storm Lee and Hurricane Irene combined last year.
“Most of these complaints are delays, not denials. So we’ll contact the company on their behalf and try to expedite the resolution,” says assistant commissioner Gale Simon.
Gov. Chris Christie says, while some delays can be expected due to the sheer volume of claims, he says complaints including phone calls not being returned by some companies are unacceptable.
“They’re overrun with claims, more than they’ve probably ever had in terms of this type of damage in the state’s history," Christie told News/Talk WSB. "But if you’re not getting any returned calls at this point, then that’s completely unacceptable and they should come to us and we’ll work to make sure we fix it.”