Rep. Pallone Urges FEMA to Expand Grace Period for Flood Insurance Policy Holders
LONG BRANCH, NJ – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) sent a letter to FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate today urging him to expand the grace period which flood insurance policy holders have to make their premium payment from 30 days to 45 days in an effort to assist those whose homes were devastated by Hurricane Sandy. Pallone requests that the expansion be effective retroactively to assist those recovering from Hurricane Sandy.
Currently, under the National Flood Insurance Program administered through FEMA, all flood insurance policies expire at 12:01 a.m. on the last day of the effective term of the insurance policy. After the expiration of a policy there is a 30 day grace period in which a policy holder remains covered. An expanded grace period would enable those affected by Sandy additional time to ensure their payment has been made and any damages or losses from Sandy will be covered.
“As I have traveled to towns along the New Jersey shore, I have witnessed heart-breaking destruction. Families have entirely lost or been displaced from their homes,” said Pallone. “It makes sense to expand the grace period to give homeowners the peace of mind that they have the insurance coverage they need, so they may be compensated for their losses and rebuild from this disaster.”
Expanding the 30 day grace period to 45 days presents no significant negative impact on the fundamentals on which the flood insurance program operates. Policy holders will not be able to choose whether to have or get coverage just before flooding occurs. Rather, policyholders will have extra time to ensure that their payment has been processed ensure they maintain insurance coverage while they manage their post-Sandy finances.
“As we begin to recover from Hurricane Sandy, expanding the grace period for flood insurance payments will make an important difference for many struggling families in the region,” added Pallone.