Hurricane Insurance Claims—Know Your Rights
Both 2017 and 2018 had intense hurricane seasons. Thousands of residents across the United States suffered major damage to their homes. Many also tragically lost their lives. When faced with an insurance claim due to hurricane damage, many homeowners feel overwhelmed and confused. However, there are certain rights that all policyholders have during the claims process.
First, contact your insurance company as soon as possible to put them on notice of the claim. In fact, your policy may require that you notify the company as soon as possible of any damage. By putting the insurance company on notice of the claim, the insurance company is under obligation to start the claims process.
You also have the right to ask the insurance adjuster to carefully look at all of the damage your home has suffered. In some cases, the insurance adjuster may dismiss your concerns or may decline your invitation into every room of the house. However, it is important that the adjuster see every inch of damage your property has sustained. If the adjuster does not assess all of the damage (for example, the adjuster does not go onto your roof), make a note of the parts of the property the adjuster did not evaluate.
You do not have to stay in your home if it is not safe to do so. Most insurance policies have “Alternative Living Expenses” coverage that provides funds for the out of pocket expenses you make to live or stay somewhere else while your property is undergoing repairs.
You also have the right to refuse the insurance company’s initial offer. It is no secret that many insurance companies lowball the first offer they make to their policyholders. After all, the insurance company’s goal is to protect the company and settle claims for as little money as possible. A disaster relief attorney is a valuable asset during the claims process.
Insurance policyholders have the right to take their insurance companies to court if the insurance companies refuse to settle claims for a reasonable amount of money. If the insurance company is acting in bad faith—not providing coverage when it should—the insurance company may be held accountable in a lawsuit. The insurance company may also be asked to pay other expenses to the policyholder, such as attorneys’ fees and court costs.
With the assistance of an experienced disaster relief attorney, your rights remain protected throughout the claims process. Without our knowledgeable attorneys, you may unknowingly damage your claim by speaking with adjusters, signing releases, or agreeing to settle a claim for far too little money. Our Florida insurance claim attorneys ensures that you are being treated fairly by your insurance company.
If you need assistance with an insurance claim, call GED Lawyers today
At GED Lawyers, our Florida disaster relief attorneys are experienced in all types of insurance claims, including those involving hurricanes. We fight for our clients and are not afraid to take insurance companies to court. We have more than 50 years of combined experience on your side and have collected millions in insurance claims for home and property owners who have suffered losses from hurricanes or other disasters. We have offices in Boca Raton, Panama City, Sarasota, Melbourne, Clearwater, Orlando, Naples, and Estero. To schedule your free consultation, call 844-443-3529 or visit us online.