While Florida is blessed with more than its fair share of natural beauty, it is also the scene of disastrous hurricanes every year, with the result that making a storm damage claim to an insurance company is a common occurrence.
Unfortunately, insurance companies do not always deal fairly with their policyholders. Their representatives look for ways to save the company money, and that frequently means paying out as little as possible on claims. In the worst cases, these claims are denied outright.
This is why more people are seeking the assistance of a hurricane damage claims lawyer like Your Insurance Attorney. With legal professionals who focus their efforts in this area, Your Insurance Attorney is frequently able to achieve satisfactory results, so that home and business owners can repair or replace their property and get back on their feet.
Throughout Florida’s long history, hurricanes and other severe storms have caused devastating amounts of damage. In fact, statistics suggest that hurricanes cause the most expensive property damage in the United States.
Home and business owners across the state have become accustomed to preparing for hurricanes and severe weather events. Part of that preparation is buying an appropriate insurance policy.
Having that policy gives the property owner a great deal of peace of mind. They believe that they are covered whenever destructive weather strikes, and they feel that they’ve made a responsible decision.
However, when a hurricane does strike, policyholders often find themselves embroiled in a far more complex, difficult and time-consuming process than they envisioned. They thought their insurance company would be there for them when they are dealing with lost or damaged property, which may include the total loss of their home and its contents.
What they get instead are delays and excuses, as well as lowball offers, that can’t begin to address the devastation that they have experienced.
A storm damage claim can cover a lot of ground. Typically, a hurricane or similar insurance policy is supposed to cover losses such as:
The sad reality is that many insurance company adjusters will look for excuses to pay an insufficient settlement or not pay anything at all. This leaves the homeowner with damaged property and little prospect for improving their situation.
Recovering from hurricane damage can be expensive. With damage coming from wind, water, flooding, tree branches and more, it’s difficult to assess all of the losses. What’s more, it’s virtually impossible to get back to a normal life while all of this is going on.
You want to move the claims process along as quickly as possible, and this may mean that you have to take certain steps. For instance, you will want to examine how you can mitigate the risk of additional losses. Most insurance policies actually bind the policyholder with a legal duty to minimize the impact of their losses after a severe storm.
This means using tarps to keep out water or boarding up broken windows. To find out what sorts of duties you have in the aftermath of a hurricane, take a close look at your policy. These documents will also provide information regarding how to file a claim, including any deadlines you must meet. This is critical, because insurance companies may deny a claim based on its timeliness.
Even before you pick up the phone to call your insurance company, it’s wise to contact a qualified attorney who works with hurricane damage claims. They can help you throughout the claims process so that you can avoid many of the most common pitfalls that delay or derail other people’s claims.
While some insurance companies operate in good faith and do their best for their clients, others are less forthright. Their bad faith efforts may mean that you don’t get paid or that you only get paid a fraction of the money to which you’re entitled.
If your insurance company does engage in certain bad faith practices, then you may be entitled to make a financial recovery that is above and beyond the actual cost of the damages your property suffered because of the storm.
Common bad faith practices in insurance include:
Even if your insurance company doesn’t engage in these practices, it doesn’t mean that you’re being treated fairly and in line with the terms of your policy. Insurance companies can and do misinterpret policy coverage, and they also may make mistakes or fail to carry out a thorough investigation.
When a hurricane or tropical storm strikes, you need a seasoned professional advocating on your behalf with the insurance company. Make no mistake, your insurer is staffed with experts who know the insurance industry inside and out. They know how to play the game so that their company always turns a profit.
No matter how sincere and polite insurance company representatives seem, they are not wholly on your side. Only the advocates at Your Insurance Attorney are completely devoted to your best interests.
To demonstrate this commitment, Your Insurance Attorney doesn’t receive any compensation unless you do. Whether your claim hasn’t been filed yet or you’re in the middle of the claims process, contact Your Insurance Attorney today to protect your rights.