Sarasota, among other cities throughout the state, was hit hard by Hurricane Ian. For many, getting back on their feet means dealing with the insurance claims process. Our Sarasota Hurricane Ian lawyer can help you file a claim for financial recovery.
If your claim was denied, or you believe you deserve a higher settlement offer, we can help. At GED Lawyers, our legal team understands the claims process. We can dispute an unfair claim rejection and fight for your rights.
Do I Need to Hire a Sarasota Hurricane Ian Lawyer?
Hurricane Ian victims are not required to hire a lawyer. You can submit a claim without working with a legal representative. However, these claims may be complicated by:
- Low settlement offers
- Complicated insurance language
The aftermath of a hurricane can be hectic, involving temporary housing and frantic home repairs. Adding difficult insurance negotiations to this situation can be unbearable. By working with our Hurricane Ian property damage claims lawyer, you can delegate the challenging portion of your case to another party. This way, you can spend your time where it counts, like supporting your family through this difficult time.
What do Hurricane Ian Lawyers Do?
At GED Lawyers, we provide our clients with several services. They include:
- Disputing unfair claim offers or denials
- Advising you on how to communicate with your insurer
- Ensuring that you understand the details of your insurance policy
- Filing lawsuits on your behalf
- Handling all insurance communications
You likely have a lot on your plate. Hurricane Ian carved a path of destruction through Florida. We’re here to give you peace of mind and make your case as simple as possible for you.
In addition to these services, we prioritize financial accessibility. Our offices work on a contingency-fee basis. This means that we require no fees until we win your case. We can discuss the specifics of contingency fees during an initial meeting.
Approach Sarasota Hurricane Insurance Claims With Caution
Insurance companies are businesses. Running an effective business involves saving money, which, in some cases, means issuing unfair claim denials to insurance consumers.
Take these steps during the claims process to ensure that you have your bases covered:
- Don’t disclose any unnecessary information to your insurer
- Maintain a journal of your interactions with insurers
- Start your claim as soon as you can
- Thoroughly document the damages to your home
At GED Lawyers, we’ve worked on many insurance claim cases in the past. We’re familiar with the hurricane claims process and can apply this familiarity to your case. If you have questions about dealing with insurers, we can address them during a free case evaluation.
Reasons for Hurricane Ian Claim Denials
If you haven’t submitted your Hurricane Ian claim yet, consider these common reasons for claims denials:
- Your insurance doesn’t cover the type of damage you requested compensation for
- You didn’t provide insurers with the correct documents
- You didn’t properly document the damage to your home
- Your insurer issued you an unfair claim denial
If you know why your claim was denied, it’ll be easier to negotiate for a change to your claim. Our legal team can evaluate your case and help you determine the cause of your denial or lowball offer.
What If Your Claim Was Already Denied?
If your Hurricane Ian claim was denied, you have a few options. While the approaches you can take may vary depending on the type of claim you filed, you can typically:
- File a lawsuit: If you believe that your insurer is operating in “bad faith,” you may have grounds for legal action. A lawsuit could secure a jury award for your damages
- File an appeal: You may be able to file an appeal for your claim. During the appeals process, make sure that you submit detailed documentation of your damages.
- Negotiate with your insurer: After you’ve received a claim rejection, you can always reinitiate contact with your insurer to discuss your claim.
Do You Understand the Specifics of Your Hurricane Insurance?
Before filing a claim, it’s crucial that you understand what your policy does and doesn’t cover. In Sarasota, Florida, hurricane insurance is actually composed of two different policies:
- Homeowners insurance: In Sarasota, Florida, standard homeowner’s policies, like an HO-3, typically cover wind damage but not flood damage.
- Flood insurance: Flood insurance, which is purchased separately, covers hurricane water damage.
What About Your Car?
In Sarasota, Florida, you’re required to carry two types of car insurance policies, personal injury protection (PIP) insurance and property damage liability (PDL) insurance. While these policies are mandatory, they do not provide protection against hurricanes. Typically, you’ll need to carry a comprehensive auto policy for hurricane coverage.
Every Policy Is Unique
Sarasota insurance policies vary considerably. For example, it’s possible to opt out of wind damage insurance when buying a homeowners policy. If you did so, your homeowners’ policy might not provide this type of coverage.
Therefore, it’s best to review the specifics of your unique policy during the claims process. This way, you won’t be caught off guard when an insurer suggests that you don’t have proper coverage.
Hurricane Ian Insurance Holders Are Protected By Law
As an insurance consumer in Sarasota, you have various protections under Florida Statutes § 624.155. They include:
- The right to an expedient claims process
- Protections from “bad faith” insurance practices
According to Florida Statutes § 624.155, “bad faith” insurance practices occur when insurance is “Not attempting in good faith to settle claims when, under all the circumstances, it could and should have done so, had it acted fairly and honestly toward its insured and with due regard for her or his interests.”
In plain language, this could include:
- Taking too long to deal with your claim
- Rejecting your claim for an unfair reason
- Providing you with a claim without proper financial documentation
Violating “bad faith” insurance laws could be grounds for legal action. If you believe that your insurer is operating in “bad faith,” our legal team can discuss your options with you.
Things to Keep in Mind When You File an Insurance Claim in Sarasota
To protect your Sarasota Hurricane Ian claim, there are a few things you should keep in mind. These include:
- Remember who you spoke to on the phone. If your attorney suspects your insurance company is using bad faith tactics when they handle your claim, it will be useful to know which employee you spoke to. This can help us hold the insurance company accountable.
- Keep note of your claim’s timeline. Delaying the processing of your claim is illegal, so your Sarasota property damage lawyer should know how much time has occurred between each step of your case.
Evidence You Can Use to Support Your Hurricane Ian Claim
When you file your Hurricane Ian claim, you’ll want to include evidence to support it. Your insurance provider will want to see proof of the storm damage your home or car sustained. Such evidence could include:
- Before and after photos: Property owners should take pictures or videos of their home before and after a natural disaster like a hurricane. Before the storm, take photos of each room so you can prove that the storm was the reason for the damage to your home.
- Receipts: If you have any receipts for any valuable items, keep them in a safe place. Your Hurricane Ian lawyer may recommend that you present these receipts to your insurer to demonstrate the cost of your losses.
Consult With a Sarasota Hurricane Ian Lawyer Today
Are you ready to fight an unfair claim rejection? Our legal team is currently accepting claims cases related to Hurricane Ian. We can defend your rights and act as your legal voice. Contact our offices for a free case evaluation today.