Senators Volker, Rath Schedule Insurance Q&a Session To Ensure Speedy Checks From Insurance Companies

William T. Stachowski

October 20, 2006

Senator Dale M. Volker (R-C-I, Depew) and Senator Mary Lou Rath (R-C, Williamsville) announced today that they have scheduled three public question and answer sessions with representatives of major property and casualty insurance companies next week to ensure that homeowners and other policy holders can get information they need regarding filing insurance claims and receiving payment to repair damages.

"People are concerned about getting their homes fixed, repairing damages and getting their lives back to normal," Senator Volker said. "A major part of that is working with insurance companies and ensuring that they are responding quickly to people’s needs. We’ve been in touch with the Insurance Department and many insurance companies and we appreciate their cooperation in helping people recover from the storm by participating in these Q and A sessions."

"Many insurance companies already have adjusters here and we appreciate their prompt response, but as we continue the recovery effort, people will have more questions," Senator Rath said. "These forums will benefit homeowners and the insurance companies by giving them the opportunity to meet with people and provide information and assistance so people can get their homes and lives back together quickly."

The Q and A sessions are scheduled as follows:

> Monday, October 23rd, 6 - 8 p.m. at the Lancaster Senior Center, 100 Oxford Avenue;

> Wednesday, October 25th, 6 - 8 p.m. at the Amherst Center for Senior Services, 370 John James Audubon Parkway; and

> Thursday, October 26th, 6 - 8 p.m. at the Erie Community College City Campus Mini-Gillette Auditorium, 121 Ellicott Street.

Participating insurance companies include: Nationwide, State Farm, Liberty Mutual, New York Central Mutual, OneBeacon, and a representative of the State Insurance Department. Representatives of other insurance companies may be added.

Senators Volker and Rath also urged FEMA to declare Western New York a natural disaster area so people can receive federal assistance that could cover repair costs over and above what is covered by their insurance.

"FEMA needs to make this declaration as soon as possible to generate greater assistance," Senator Volker said. "You simply can’t tell someone with a huge tree that fell through their roof during a major storm that this is not a natural disaster."