If you’re about to make a Hurricane Ian property damage claim, we highly advise that you learn these tips and tricks first. With over 2.5 million Floridians ordered to evacuate, insurance companies will be facing thousands of calls this week, and you’ll be treated as a drop in the ocean. They will be striving to pay you as little as possible!
What to Know Before Making Your Hurricane Ian Property Damage Claim
1. Contact a Property Damage Claim Attorney Immediately
Your priority should be contacting a Hurricane Ian property damage claim attorney. You can call us today for a free consultation.
Remember, insurers are for-profit and care more about their profits than their customers! They’ll be doing everything to manipulate, exploit and ultimately undervalue your claim.
A property damage claims attorney will make this extremely stressful time easier and ensure you get the maximum possible settlement. They will provide you with specific advice for your circumstances, handle conflicts and negotiations and give you the space to breathe.
If your insurer says that you don’t have the right to speak to an attorney, they are lying. You always have the right to speak and work with a property damage lawyer.
2. You Need to Notify Your Insurance Company Fast
It’s important you contact your insurer as soon as possible to let them know your property has sustained damage. Request an adjuster to be sent to assess the damage. Informing your insurance company early prevents you from being accused of not taking responsible action.
3. Document Everything!
Our number one piece of advice for Hurricane Ian property damage claims is to document, document and document again!
Your word alone doesn’t mean a thing to insurance companies. They need proof. Take photos and videos of the property once it’s safe to do so, before you clean or make temporary repairs. And when you’re finished, take some more!
This may include photos and videos of:
- External and internal structural damage (no matter how small).
- Water or flooding
- Damage to windows and doors.
- Plumbing damage
- Roof damage
- Electrical damage
- Damage to appliances
- Damage to personal possessions
- Vehicle damage
- Damage to your yard, trees and external furnishings.
Read Related: What’s the Difference Between Water Damage & Flood Damage?
4. List What You’ve Lost
Make an inventory of everything that’s been damaged or lost in Hurricane Ian. From your TV to collectible baseball cards, it’s all worth noting so that nothing is overlooked by your insurance company. Note the year of model numbers and brand names if possible.
5. Collect Receipts
Hopefully, you still have access to stuff like receipts and proof of purchases. These can be used to prove the value of appliances, items and personal possessions.
Any repair or accommodation bills related to Hurricane Ian should also be kept safe. You’ll use these later to get your money back.
6. Track Your Communication with Your Insurer
Take notes of every call, email or letter you get from your insurance company. Your notes should include:
- Date and time of the call.
- The name of the insurance representative.
- The details and information discussed during the call or email.
7. Make Temporary Emergency Repairs
You are not expected to fix significant damage immediately, but you must take action to mitigate further damage. If you don’t, your coverage could be reduced or denied entirely.
Keep all the receipts of materials you’ve purchased or professional repair services required. You can include this in your Hurricane Ian property damage claim later.
8. Don’t Assume the Insurer’s Estimate Is Correct
As previously stated, insurance companies will be working to minimize their outgoing costs. They often give incorrect estimates. You need to be skeptical.
Ideally, get an independent evaluation of your property. The best homeowner’s insurance claims attorney will have the resources to get you a reputable independent estimate.
These quotes and estimates can then be used during negotiations with your insurer.
9. Review Your Insurance Policy
We often see insurers claim that policyholders don’t have sufficient coverage or that there is a loophole. Don’t take their word for it. They often make mistakes or misinterpret the insurance policy coverages.
Pull out your homeowner’s insurance policy and read the details. If something doesn’t add up, or you’re confused, call a Hurricane Ian property damage attorney immediately.
Make sure you know:
- Coverage limits.
- What’s covered
- What’s not covered
- What your deductible is.
Read Related: What’s Covered in a Hurricane Insurance Claim?
10. Know These Insurance Industry Tactics!
These are big warnings signs that your Hurricane Ian insurance claim is being treated unfairly:
- Undervalued claims
- Denied Claims
- Delaying tactics
- Manipulation and/or bullying
- Incorrect policy coverage claims
- Slow responses or no responses
- You’re blamed for the damage
- You’re told you don’t have the right to speak to a lawyer.
Florida Property Damage Attorneys Specializing in Hurricane Ian Insurance Claims
If you need to make a Hurricane Ian property damage claim in Florida, then contact us today.
Attorney Jonathon Douglas leads the property damage claim team nationally ranked by US News and World Reports as a Tier 1 Law Firm, Battaglia Ross Dicus & McQuaid, P.A.
Having previously represented some of the largest insurance companies in the State of Florida, Mr. Douglas uses his inside knowledge and experience to help you navigate Hurricane Ian insurance claims.
Regardless of your situation, you can receive a free consultation today.