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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONSUMER ADVISORY: NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM NOT ISSUING NEW POLICIES
Bill Extending NFIP and COBRA Subsidies on Hold in Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 2, 2010) — The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is advising consumers the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is not currently issuing new policies or renewing policies to cover flood damage, following the expiration of the program’s federal authorization on Feb. 28, 2010. The NFIP sunset could also cause short-term problems for consumers waiting to close on the sale of a property within a Special Flood Hazard Area. However, consumers with current policies are still covered by the federal program.

Extension of the NFIP, along with several other federal programs including jobless benefits, COBRA subsidies and transportation project funding were all part of legislation pending Senate approval. Until Congress approves this reauthorization, the NFIP cannot issue new policies, increase coverage or approve renewal policies. When a similar situation arose in the past, Congress enacted legislation that retroactively reauthorized the continuation of the NFIP, assuring no gap in coverage for current policyholders.

Standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover flooding. The NFIP was created in 1968 to help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves from floods associated with hurricanes, overflow of rivers or lakes, rain storms, mudslides and winter melt. Congress is responsible for the continued funding of the program. The pending bill would reauthorize the program to the end of May 2010.

If you have questions about your flood coverage, contact your insurance agent or the NFIP at www.floodsmart.gov.

About the NAIC

Formed in 1871, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is a voluntary organization of the chief insurance regulatory officials of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. The NAIC has three offices: Executive Office, Washington, D.C.; Central Office, Kansas City, Mo.; and Securities Valuation Office, New York City. The NAIC serves the needs of consumers and the industry, with an overriding objective of supporting state insurance regulators as they protect consumers and maintain the financial stability of the insurance marketplace. For more information, visit www.naic.org.

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