Class Action Suit Filed Against AIG Over Katrina Claims
Americans for Insurance Reform (AIR), a New York City-based national coalition of public interest organizations, announced that a New Orleans resident has filed a class action suit against American International Group (AIG) and its subsidiary, Audubon. According to AIR's statement the suit, filed by Toni Swain Orrill, a New Orleans resident whose house was severely damaged in Hurricane Katrina, charges AIG and Audobon have failed to help their policyholders who are in desperate need of assistance after the hurricane.
AIR noted that AIG and Audobon were the underwriters and service providers of Louisiana Citizens Fair Plan (FAIR), which provides homeowners' policies of last resort to those who cannot get insurance elsewhere, including many poor people in New Orleans and the surrounding area. The class action suit is on behalf of Louisiana's FAIR plan policyholders - about 400,000 people. The suit alleges that AIG has completely failed to provide any way for its policyholders whose homes have been damaged to initiate a claim or even reach its offices to find out how to do that, or to provide temporary disaster relief provided under their policies.
According to AIR co-founder and spokesperson Joanne Doroshow, "This is the worst case that we have seen of a complete failure of an insurance company to respond to the immediate and dire situation of its Katrina policyholders. Many FAIR policyholders were struggling economically before the storm hit, and some are now reaching the point of severe impoverishment due to AIG's failure to help them. Many have still not received the temporary living expenses they are entitled to under their policies."
For a copy of the complete article, contact AIR.
Americans for Insurance Reform, 90 Broad St., Suite 401, New York, NY 10004; Phone: 212/267-2801; Fax: 212/764-4298
(AIR is a project of the Center for Justice & Democracy)