Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon is announcing the twelfth successful round of depopulation for the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (Citizens). As the state’s insurer of last resort, Citizens offers property insurance to any home or business owner that cannot otherwise obtain it, at rates adjusted annually to keep it noncompetitive with the private market.
“I’m pleased to announce the first depopulation under the new rules for the Take-Out Program,” said Commissioner Donelon. “We’ve worked closely with Citizens and the Legislature to ensure the stability of the Corporation for future storm seasons.”
During the annual depopulation process Citizens is required to open up its book of business and offer to transfer policies to the private market. This depopulation results in lower premiums for policyholders and reduces the potential for future assessments, which are charged to all property insurance consumers across the state when Citizens’ exposure exceeds their reinsurance coverage and cash availability. During the 2018 Regular Legislative Session, a measure was passed that made changes to the Citizens Take-Out Program.
Act 131 changes the Take-Out Program from a requirement to open their book of business each year into a possibility to offer policies to the voluntary market with governing board approval. It further allows Citizens to base their offerings on geographic and risk characteristics that reduce its exposure while allowing Citizens’ leadership to ensure that the insurer of last resort has sufficient infrastructure to fulfill its obligations following Louisiana’s next severe weather event.
According to Citizens, this year five companies requested 633 residential policies, from a pool of approximately 2,000 policies made available for depopulation. All five companies participating in this year’s round of depopulation have previously participated in the program. They are Access Home Insurance Company, Maison Insurance Company, Ocean Harbor Casualty Insurance Company, Safepoint Insurance Company, and Spinnaker Insurance Company. A letter from Citizens notifies consumers whose policies are selected for depopulation. Policyholders have until February 28, 2019 to opt out of moving to a private company and choose to stay with Citizens.
About the Louisiana Department of Insurance:The Louisiana Department of Insurance works to improve competition in the state’s insurance market while assisting individuals and businesses with the information and resources they need to be informed consumers of insurance. As a regulator, the LDI enforces the laws that provide a fair and stable marketplace and makes certain that insurers comply with the laws in place to protect policyholders. You can contact the LDI by calling 1-800-259-5300.