What You Should Know About Residential Property Claims in Florida
Homeowners navigate many issues associated with making a claim to their insurance company. An insurance company’s valuation and interpretation of policy provisions often results in underpayment of a loss, and partial or full denial of coverage.
Know Your Insurance Policy And What Is CoveredFew people read and understand their homeowner's insurance policy. Take the time to read it and know what items are covered under your policy and what is not before filing a claim.
The CLUE database stores any claims submitted, even those that are denied. Even if an adjuster comes out to view the damage and determines the damage is not covered under your policy, the claim will appear on your history and could cause an increase in coverage rates.
Reach Out to Your Insurance Agent ImmediatelyMost insurance policies require that incidents be reported to your insurance agent immediately, in a timely manner or as soon as reasonable or possible. Once that window has passed to report a loss in a timely manner, any damage done may no longer be covered by your insurance carrier.
Additionally, your agent is in a position to assist you in filing the claim and expediting its payment. To do that, your carrier may want to view and assess the damage themselves, and the sooner they can do that the better.
Take Photos And Keep All DocumentationPhotographs, videos, and documentation are your allies when filing a claim. As soon as any damage happens or is noticed, begin taking photographs and videos before removing or replacing anything. Get as many photos as possible, from as many angles as possible. If you need to show the scale of anything, find a standard item like a dollar bill or a yardstick to show size.
Keep records of everything. Copies of photographs, quotes, insurance policy, invoices, receipts, and police reports should be kept safe and easily accessible. Airtight documentation will help move your insurance claim through faster and easier.
Get Help When An Insurance Claim Is DeniedWhen an insurance company delays, underpays or denies your insurance claim, it can be a life-altering experience. An insurance company is a business and it is often just business as usual. An experienced law firm can provide assistance with presenting the claim to the insurance company to optimize the likelihood of a fair and timely resolution.
Don't Pay Up Front For Legal Help With Insurance ClaimsFew people understand that in Florida the policyholder can recover their legal fees and costs if they win in a lawsuit against their insurance company. Choose a law firm that will represent you on a contingency fee basis. Unless payment is recovered on your behalf for your property claims, there is no legal fee.