Florida Professional Law Group Helps Property Owners Navigate the Insurance Claim Maze
(4 months ago)
HOLLYWOOD, Fla: Due to the recent natural destruction that Florida property owners have experienced and the denied or underpaid insurance claims as a result, Marc Ben-Ezra, Managing Attorney at Florida Professional Law Group, an insurance law firm is offering tips to help residential and commercial property owners on handling those claims.
1.Insurance company adjusters and your own experts. An insurance company may use its own experts to examine the property and estimate damages. This can be helpful or harmful. For example, on a roof damage claim, an engineer sent by the insurer could suggest that the property's roof was old, decayed or damaged before the storm and the insurer could use that opinion to reduce or deny payment on a property owner's roof. The property owner can have his or her own experts examine the property and offer contrary opinions to improve their claim.
2.Delayed payments. When valid insurance claims are delayed, property owners experience inconveniences, which can result in postponing needed repairs. Insurance companies may be slow due to the volume of claims. Insurers may delay payments by requesting needless documents before processing your claim or by stretching the investigation time without valid reasons. When insurers delay payment, they retain their money for a longer period benefitting from the interest earned. Insurance laws provide timelines for insurance payments and an insurance provider that is not in compliance may be found to be acting in bad faith.
3.Denials and low offers. Insurers have countless ways to pay less for valid claims. They may use defective outdated pricing lists that don't account for soaring construction or contractor pricing. They may use unreliable depreciation models and cost structures that don't reflect the accurate age, life and use of items in your property. If your insurance company makes an unacceptable payment on your claim, you don't have to accept their offer as final. Accept the check but don't sign a release. While an insurance company is there to assist you, it is also in business to make money and may try to reduce costs when paying your claim by using the terms of your policy to deny responsibility for the claim. Sometimes this decision is a mistake. Other times, the policy and law could be interpreted differently. Don't take "NO" as a final answer.