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story.lead_photo.caption A damaged car sits covered in debris in front of a home on Thursday, May 23, 2019, following a tornado that cut through Jefferson City. Photo by News Tribune / News Tribune.

Insured losses in Missouri after tornadoes hit areas of Jefferson City, Eldon, Golden City and Carl Junction in late May are estimated to total at least $139 million.

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration recently collected information from insurance carriers in the state to determine the number of claims filed and the dollar amounts of settlements of those claims.

As of June 30, 4,891 claims have been reported, according to data submitted by those insurance companies to the DIFP.

Losses paid through those claims totals $53,795,921.

Residential properties were affected the most, with 2,901 claims reported and $29,312,127 paid in losses.

The department noted 517 commercial properties reported claims, and $16,397,508 was paid in losses. Personal auto made up 1,212 of claims reported and $5,795,629 losses paid.

Additional claims reported include:

Business interruption: 33, with $319,117 in losses paid.

Commercial auto: 102, with $602,544 in losses paid.

All other lines: 126, with $1,368,996 in losses paid.

According to the report, more than 60 percent of claims have been closed, with almost 70 percent of residential property claims closed.

Angela Nelson, director of market regulation with the DIFP, said these numbers are a good example of why it's important to have insurance, to assist with repairs or rebuilding after an emergency.

In comparison, Nelson said the EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin in 2011, resulted in almost $2 billion in insurance payments — with $1 billion paid out in the first 100 days.

Luebbering Insurance in Jefferson City had around 30 tornado-related claims, according to one of the agents, Stacie Eickhorst. The claims they received were for home, auto and renters insurance, but they didn't have any commercial claims.

Eickhorst estimates their anticipated payout to be around $250,000, but not all claims have been paid, because some properties still need to be fully assessed.

Rick Naught, with Naught-Naught Agency, said they had some commercial and residential properties, but he couldn't give a total number or estimate of losses. He said they, and the city, were fortunate there wasn't more damage.

Naught said several of their claims aren't finished with repairs and estimates of values.

Nelson said receiving an insurance payment can sometimes be delayed due to everything that goes in to the process. First, damage needs to be assessed by an insurance adjuster, and a contractor needs to be found to make repairs or rebuild.

After that, insurance companies can issue an initial payment, but the rest of the funds may not come until after the work is completed.

As far as the contents of homes go, an initial payment called an actual cash value can be given to help people replace their belongings, with a remainder of the payment coming once those things have been replaced.

Nelson said many people may not be familiar with the process, which she said is fortunate. However, if anyone has questions about the process, they can call the Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration.

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