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WCTV: Residents react to the outstanding amount of Hurricane Michael victims still waiting insurance

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) – Local residents react to a recent statistic released about outstanding insurance claims nearly 10 months after Hurricane Michael.

Fifteen percent of insurance claims from Hurricane Michael still outstanding in the Florida panhandle. That's more than 21 thousand people still waiting on their insurance money.

The state insurance commissioner pressing companies to work with property owners to close claims.

The state insurance commissioner calling it a "discouraging statistic".

There are some who've been lucky enough to receive their insurance claims, but many around here didn't even have insurance to begin with and they say that is what's discouraging.

"She actually got trapped in the house because there were three trees that fell on it."

Robin Edenfield says the person who rented one of her homes in Chattahoochee wasn't able to return because the damage from Hurricane Michael was too extensive and expensive.

"if it ain't through a loan, we got to do it ourselves."

Edenfield says 22 pine trees fell on the property of the second home she owns a few houses down.

The house next door had the worst damage. The tree that was on top of it finally being removed just last week.

Edenfield says they were in the process of getting insurance on the three houses before the hurricane hit.

Now, they have to pick up the pieces without insurance. Edenfield also says they have no FEMA funding because she wasn't living in the homes.

"Being property owners, we were denied the money that we need. So, we're having to get out and find people to help clean up and redo homes that have been destroyed. It's just been a mess."

Chattahoochee resident Bob Emberton is surprised to hear 15 percent of the nearly 148-thousand claims from Hurricane Michael are active.

"It makes you wonder who they have their coverage with."

Emberton says he got his insurance claim within a month and has a new roof on his home because of it.

"It makes a lot of difference because we had over $70,000 worth of damage. They've pretty nice to us so far."

Reports say many of the still-active insurance claims were not filed in the months immediately after the storm.

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