It’s easy for those unaffected by Hurricane Maria to forget about the devastation the storm caused. Although it’s been a year and a half since the storm made landfall, many victims are still struggling, and they feel the rest of the country doesn’t notice. A new Netflix documentary aims to remind the public of the presence of constant remnants of Hurricane Maria damage for many victims in Puerto Rico.
“After Maria” is a documentary short directed by Nadia Hallgren and produced by Lauren Cioffi. The documentary looks at the daily instability caused by the storm and the constant struggle to rebuild. Importantly, the documentary also addresses the hurdles that plagued and still continue to plague the island of Puerto Rico during recovery. These hurdles include destroyed infrastructure across the island, ineffective federal aid organizations, and underreporting of the official death toll.
Hurricane Maria victims still need help rebuilding. It will take years for the island to return to its former glory. While government aid can greatly help with recovery, Puerto Ricans also need insurance companies to play by the rules. For insurance companies, natural disasters like Hurricane Maria present huge losses in payouts. In an effort to avoid paying out, insurance companies often use bad faith tactics and misrepresent insurance policies.
One of the biggest issues with the open insurance claims in Puerto Rico is they are subject to unnecessary delays. Insurance companies are responsible for processing claims in a timely manner, but insurance companies in Puerto Rico have been so slow the Commission of Insurance has levied millions of dollars in fines for delays.
Unnecessary delays aren’t the only problem facing Puerto Rico policyholders. Insurance companies processing claims are wrongfully claiming certain damages weren’t caused by the storm or aren’t covered under the policy. This has left policyholders paying for repairs out of their pockets.