House Subcommittee Investigates Insurance Payments After Katrina

A congressional subcommittee heard testimony Wednesday in Washington, D.C. about the conduct of the nation's insurance companies after Hurricane Katrina. Fourth District Congressman Gene Taylor and Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood were among the speakers.

"We are trying to make them pay for what they did insure. They were supposed to insure for wind, as my assistant pointed out. There was a saying during the Clinton years - 'It's the wind stupid.' They are not even paying for what they insure," Hood told House members.

"When a company issues a memo to ignore wind and blame it all on the water, they are, by their own admission, sticking taxpayers with bills that State Farm, AllState and others should have paid. That is where the fraud against the taxpayers comes in," Taylor said.

AllState released a statement in response to Taylor's accusation.

AllState Spokesperson Mike Siemienas said, "There's absolutely no factual information to support this false accusation. AllState is proud of the work it has done on behalf of its customers in the gulf coast region where we have settled more than 98 percent of homeowners claims and 99 percent of auto claims."

Rep. Taylor also said the fact insurance companies are exempt from anti-trust laws is wrong, and it should be against the law.

Click here to read Rep. Gene Taylor complete testimony, plus see all the documents he submitted to the congressional subcommittee.

Click here to read Attorney General Jim Hood's testimony.

Click here to read Rep. Bobby Jindal's testimony.

Click here to read testimony from Mr. David Maurstad, Director and Federal Insurance Administrator, Mitigation Division of FEMA.

Click here to read testimony from Dr. Robert P. Hartwig, President and Chief Economist, Insurance Information Institute.