The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) — a crucial system that provides flood insurance coverage to millions of American homes — is set to expire at exactly 11:59 pm on September 30, 2023. This looming deadline necessitates swift action from Congress to pass a Continuing Resolution (CR) to secure the funding and prevent a likely government standstill.


While everyone’s fingers are crossed that a last-ditch agreement to extend the NFIP and avert the shutdown surfaces before September 30, it is wise to brace for a potential NFIP lapse.


Perhaps the far-reaching implication of such a lapse is the cessation of the NFIP’s capacity to issue new flood insurance policies, including renewals. However, coverages that were activated before the program interruption will remain valid until the completion of their one-year tenure. Importantly, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) still retains the power to approve valid claims using remaining funds.


To aid understanding of the potential developments, FEMA unveiled Bulletin W-23012, providing insightful guidance on potential outcomes of new and renewed NFIP policies should a lapse occur. Pages 7 and 8 present a Q&A session addressing common concerns regarding an NFIP lapse. When the NFIP program is eventually reauthorized, FEMA will inform the NFIP insurers and agents.


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