Can You Negotiate A Hurricane Insurance Claim?
Hurricanes can cause damage that ranges from minor to severe. Regardless of the severity of your loss, you should still file a hurricane insurance claim that can help you cover the cost of repairs or replacement. Even though you pay your insurance premiums faithfully and on time to ensure this coverage is available when needed, your insurance company may still deny or underpay your claim. Below, our Daytona Beach hurricane insurance claims lawyer outlines why insurers deny these claims, and how you can negotiate for fair coverage.
How Can Insurance Companies Deny Claims?
Insurance companies deny claims because they are for-profit businesses that are more concerned about their revenue than they are helping homeowners. Many people are surprised when they are denied because the storm was obviously, very real. For example, when Hurricane Ian hit Florida in September of 2022, it was an extremely serious storm and made headlines around the country. Due to the fact that the storm obviously happened, homeowners often wonder why the insurance company denied their claim.
Insurance adjusters are trained to deny or undervalue claims as a first response. Adjustors also often use irrelevant facts to deny or undervalue a claim because they know most policyholders will not fight it. For example, a hurricane may cause a branch to break through your living room window. The insurer may tell you that because the frame was damaged beforehand, you are not entitled to coverage. This is irrelevant because the broken window pane, and not the frame, was the cause of the damage.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company
If the insurance company has undervalued or denied your hurricane claim, you do have the right to negotiate for fair coverage. Many insurers will tell you the terms of your insurance policy prohibit negotiation, but that is never true. They are only hoping that you will not question their authority and accept lower coverage, or not question the denial.
Before negotiation with the insurance company, it is critical that you review your policy to make sure you understand the terms. If you are unaware of the terms, the insurer will likely use this to their advantage. You should then understand the true value of the loss caused by the damage. This includes obtaining estimates from different contractors you will use to make repairs or replacements. You should obtain an estimate from a few different companies so you can understand the average cost of repairs.
The insurance company will also want to know the extent of the damage. It is critical that you take pictures that show the nature and severity of the damage. You should also retain all bills and invoices to establish the costs you have already incurred. The more proof you can present to the insurer, the better your chances of obtaining the coverage you need.
Our Hurricane Insurance Claims Lawyers in Daytona Beach Can Help You Obtain Full Coverage
If your insurance company has denied or tried to underpay your claim, our Daytona Beach hurricane insurance claims lawyers at Bundza & Rodriguez can negotiate with the insurer on your behalf so you obtain the full coverage you deserve. Call us now at 386-252-5170 or connect with us online to schedule a free consultation.