Minnesota Officials: May Tornado Caused $2.25 Mil in Auto Claims

Minnesota regulators say the state’s insurance providers have paid out $64 million on damage claims—including about $2.25 million involving auto policies—filed in the wake of a tornado that tore through Minneapolis in May.

Those settlements account for about 80 percent of the adjusted claims filed in the aftermath of the storm, according to the state Department of Commerce. Another 920 claims—estimated at $8.7 million—have yet to be processed, but are expected to be paid, officials said.

The twister that struck north Minneapolis on May 22 was part of an outbreak of tornadoes over Midwestern and Southern states that caused at least 177 deaths and an estimated $6.5 billion in insured losses, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

As of Oct. 1, Minnesota residents had filed about 4,530 claims for damage done by the tornado, according to the department, which based its announcement on data collected from more than 40 companies that provide Minnesota auto insurance, homeowner policies and other types of coverage.

“Tracking this information allows us to effectively assess the magnitude of devastation caused by the storm,” Commissioner Mike Rothman said in a news release. “But most importantly, this data gives our department the tools we need to closely monitor the progress insurers are making on processing the claims of their policyholders.”

A spokesman for the department said in an email that the largest number of claims—more than 3,600—were filed on homeowner policies, with payouts totaling more than $50 million. More than $2 million in payouts for damage to private vehicles has been paid out on nearly 500 claims.

Rothman urged state residents who are having trouble with their insurance claims to contact his department for assistance.

“When people’s homes are destroyed and their lives have been upended, we have a responsibility to get them the help they need in a timely manner,” he said. “That is why tracking this information is so important.”

About Ben Zitney
Benjamin Zitney has been covering the auto insurance industry for the past 2.5 years. Before coming to Online Auto Insurance News, he produced an extensive company history of the 30-year-old California Joint Powers Insurance Authority and worked at the Cal State Long Beach Daily Forty-Niner as a reporter, copy editor and news editor.

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