You bought insurance to protect your property. You paid your premiums. You filed a claim when your home was damaged in a storm and . . . your insurance company told you it isn’t going to pay.
Unfortunately, this is an all-too-common scenario for South Florida homeowners. Home and flood insurance companies regularly deny homeowners’ claims for a variety of different reasons. While some of these reasons are legitimate (i.e. in the case of obvious insurance fraud), many homeowners experience improper denials. If you believe that your home or flood insurance company improperly denied your claim, here are some steps you can take to continue fighting for coverage:
Steps to Take After a Home or Flood Insurance Claim Denial
1. Collect Your Claim Records.
First, collect everything you have relating to your insurance claim. This includes your policy, emails, letters you received in the mail, repair estimates and anything you can access from your online account.
If you have not done so already, take plenty of photos of the damage to your home. If you made any temporary repairs or paid a contractor for repairs out-of-pocket, take detailed photos of the repairs as well.
3. Hire a Public Adjuster.
A public adjuster is similar to an insurance adjuster, except that he or she works for homeowners and not an insurance company. By hiring an experienced public adjuster, you can submit an unbiased assessment of the damage to your home when you challenge your insurance claim denial.
4. Be as Detailed as Possible.
From the photos you take to the quotes and reports you obtain from contractors and public adjusters, try to capture as much detail as possible. The more specific you can be in demonstrating what your insurance company owes, the better your chances of securing payment without formal legal action.
5. Learn about Insurance Bad Faith.
Although some improper insurance claim denials are the result of legitimate questions regarding the validity of the claim, many denials are the result of bad-faith insurance practices. There are several warning signs of insurance bad faith, and knowing how to spot them will help you make informed decisions about fighting back against your insurance company.
6. Learn More about Common Issues with Property Insurance Claims.
When faced with a property insurance claim denial, it is important to have as much information about your legal rights as possible. Our Insurance Resources for South Florida Homeowners will help you learn more about your rights as a policyholder in Florida.
7. Speak with a Property Damage Insurance Claim Lawyer.
If your insurance company is refusing to pay, your best option may be to hire a professional to handle your claim for you. An experienced property damage attorney will be able to assess your rights; negotiate with your insurance company; and, if necessary, take your insurance company to court to secure payment for the damage to your home.
Contact the Fort Lauderdale Property Damage Attorneys at Saavedra | Goodwin
If your home was damaged in a storm and you are struggling to receive payment from your insurance company, our property damage attorneys can help. To schedule a confidential initial consultation, please call (954) 928-9568 or request an appointment online today.