BUSINESS & ECONOMY

Sandy Hits New Jersey Insurers with Record Number of Claims

By Senior Correspondent Desirée Taylor
NJ Today

Superstorm Sandy has led to a record number of claims at New Jersey Manufacturer’s Insurance Company (NJM). So far ,the company has received about 53,000 Sandy-related claims. NJM officials estimate that total payouts to policyholders could exceed $300 million. That’s about four times what it paid as a result of Tropical Storm Irene. Other insurance companies have even higher estimates. Allstate expects the superstorm will result in $1.3 billion in payouts to affected policyholders.

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To date, NJM has already closed more than 45 percent of Sandy-related claims. Nearly $100 million has been disbursed to policyholders to help them repair and rebuild their homes. Despite the financial toll on NJM, company officials say the large payouts won’t adversely affect its bottom line because the company is well capitalized and prepared to handle catastrophes.

Sandy was the largest event NJM has had to respond to in it’s nearly 100-year old history. In order to respond to a storm of this magnitude, NJM reorganized its staff and reached out to vendors to offer help. And claims have been prioritized so that policyholders who had damage to their primary residence are put on the top of the list.