Insurance agent association asks FEMA to delay federal flood insurance changes

Insurance agent association asks FEMA to delay federal flood insurance changes | Insurance Business America

Insurance agent association asks FEMA to delay federal flood insurance changes

The National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA) has sent a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), requesting that the federal agency delay its implementation of the new Risk Rating 2.0 (RR 2.0) methodology for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

PIA indicated that while it “strongly supports” RR 2.0 and its move towards risk-based pricing of flood insurance, it has become increasingly concerned regarding the new methodology’s rollout. Several reasons for the association’s growing concern were listed, including delays, confusion, failure of the rating engine, and the absence of adequate training for flood insurance agents – one of the main issues PIA was pushing for during the development of RR 2.0.

“RR 2.0 is not ready for its scheduled Oct. 1 implementation,” said PIA national vice president of government relations Jon Gentile. “The prodigious efforts of agents, carriers and vendors were not enough to overcome the tremendous gaps in FEMA’s rollout process. PIA is not alone in reaching this conclusion; members of Congress on both sides of the aisle have also called for a delay.”

“PIA repeatedly expressed concern to FEMA representatives about the role of agents—and the resulting consumer experience—in the development and implementation of RR 2.0,” PIA stated in its letter to FEMA administrator Deanne Criswell. “PIA continually requested robust training and education to enable agents to guide policyholders through this unprecedented change in NFIP rates. Despite our efforts, agents were not provided with adequate training or education.”

“PIA firmly believes that RR 2.0 will ultimately better serve current and prospective policyholders,” said PIA National counsel and director of regulatory affairs Lauren G. Pachman. “We want RR 2.0 to succeed. That has led us to conclude that RR 2.0 must be postponed until Apr. 1, 2022 for all policies, both new and renewing, so that these issues can be properly addressed.”

Pachman added in a statement that policyholders, agents, venders, WYOs, and other stakeholders all deserve an implementation experience “that matches the quality of the RR 2.0 methodology itself.”