The Board of Directors of the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corp. (Citizens) has voted to increase the amount of commercial property insurance coverage available to businesses to ensure they can acquire sufficient coverage through Citizens if they are not able to secure coverage in the private market.
Commercial coverage limits were temporarily increased to $10 million for a single building, $3.2 million in contents, and up to $20 million of aggregate coverage per insured, up from $5.5 million for a single building, $2.2 million in contents and $11 million in aggregate coverage per insured. These increases took effect immediately after the vote at last week’s meeting. They are scheduled to sunset in two years, at which time the limit levels will be reevaluated. The last time commercial limits were raised was in 2013.
Citizens also covers personal property up to $1 million and offers $500,000 in contents coverage.
After the historic 2020 hurricane season with hurricanes Laura, Delta and Zeta followed by Hurricane Ida this year, some companies are limiting their writing of property insurance. Fewer companies actively writing commercial and private property policies in the state will likely mean more residents will need to acquire coverage with Citizens, the state-sponsored insurer of last resort, which provides coverage when no options are available with private companies.
“The board of Louisiana Citizens has taken prudent steps to ensure that Citizens can accommodate a wider range of properties if businesses and homeowners can’t find coverage in the private sector. Citizens is prepared for changes in the private market after the tough back-to-back storm seasons we just experienced,” Commissioner Donelon said.