Despite the extension the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through May 31, 2019, FEMA has unexpectedly halted appropriation funding for the program, effectively creating an NFIP lapse.
According to FEMA, this means that:
“NFIP insurers (Write Your Own companies and NFIP Direct) may not collect premiums for the issuance, renewal, or monetary endorsements of NFIP policies because doing so would cause the government to incur obligations without an appropriation.” (Download FEMA’s Guidelines on the Effects of a Lapse of Appropriation for the NFIP for further details.)
This is unfortunate news, as noted in the Big “I” Joint Statement on FEMA Action to Limit NFIP Operations issued late yesterday (December 26, 2018):
“Today the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced its intention to halt regular operations for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in response to the ongoing government shutdown. This decision comes despite Congress passing and the President signing legislation last week specifically intended to keep the program operating during the shutdown.
The decision to stop issuing and renewing NFIP policies for the time being is a rebuke of the clear intent of Congress and the President. The inability of FEMA to act as directed by our elected officials is disappointing.
The leadership shown by Congress to ensure that Americans in flood prone areas have continued access to flood insurance, as NFIP reforms are debated, is commendable. We stand ready to work with Congress and the Administration to find solutions to close the flood insurance gap and grow the number of property owners covered by flood insurance through the NFIP and the private market. In the meantime, we urge FEMA to rethink its decision.”
Private Flood Insurance Not Affected
The lapse in appropriations will not prevent the purchase or renewal of private flood insurance policies, including EZ Flood. Private flood insurance is not regulated by FEMA and operates independently of the NFIP.
MAIA’s Number One Insurance Agency can provide quoting assistance with EZ Flood — Contact Judy Carlson at firstname.lastname@example.org or (508) 634-7368 to learn more.