Has your adjuster denied your claim because he said you didn’t have proper coverage? Many insurance companies deny claims on the grounds that the damage incurred is excluded under your policy. This happens often with hurricanes when an adjuster claims damage was caused by flooding, when in all actuality it was caused by wind damage and heavy rainfall through that damage.
Wind damage is generally covered under a homeowner’s policy and can cover damage such as fire, lightning, or hail. A homeowner’s policy can also cover damage including a fallen tree that damages a roof or windows of a home.
Water Damage is also generally covered under a homeowner’s policy, but with very specific exceptions. Water damage that would be covered in a homeowner’s policy would be damage such as a busted pipe, or a leaking roof. It generally does not cover damage from water coming into the home from the ground since this would be considered flooding. A separate flood policy must be purchased to cover this type of damage. It would include water that seeps into the home from a heavy rainfall or as the result of a lake, ocean or river overflowing onto the property.
Sometimes claims are denied or receive a lesser payout with good reason, but quite often it is done to raise frustrations of homeowners and pressure them into taking a lesser payout then they deserve.
A few things you can do on your part to ensure that you are properly covered when filing your claim should you have damage from a hurricane:
• Pay your premiums on time;
• Buy separate flood insurance if you are within one hundred miles of the coast line; and
• File your claim and present a proof of claim as soon as possible to your insurer.
A few things to beware of when filing a claim and dealing with an adjuster:
• Know your policy because sometimes adjusters make false statements about what your policy covers;
• Make sure your adjuster is not making a low ball offer for settlement
• Be mindful there are not unreasonable delays in processing your claim.
If your property has been damaged and your claims have gone unpaid, underpaid, or they are being delayed or denied, it is important to contact an experienced attorney to review your policy and claim.
At Thornhill Law Firm, we have the experience and resources for handling property and flood claims that you need to protect the assets you have lost. Our access to professional adjusters to work for you and our experience negotiating with insurance companies after events like this could make all the difference in what you recover.