Frequently Asked Questions about Hurricane & Windstorm

FAQs About Hurricane & Windstorm

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It depends. If inspection of your building reveals a breach in your roof membrane that allowed water to enter the building, for example, then you should have coverage. If on the other hand, it is determined that you simply have a wear and tear or maintenance type problem not caused by a windstorm, then typically your policy will exclude this type of loss.

This is a situation where we may be able to help. First we would want to arrange an inspection with you and ideally with your contractor. A review of your property insurance contract would be in order to determine coverage, exclusions, limitations, conditions, etc. Do you have ordinance and law coverage for example? Will the building department require you to replace the whole roof because it is damaged and does not meet current code?  Based on our/your contractor’s assessment can an argument be made for replacement under your property insurance policy? Will a roof consultant/other expert be needed? Each case is unique with its own set of evidence. But this is a case that we would want to assess in person and then let you know our opinion firsthand. If agreement as to amount cannot be reached with your insurance carrier then a formal appraisal process may be an option. 
Yes, in this situation we would recommend several things. After a review of your policy to determine the coverage’s available, we would then want to complete our own building damage assessment and compare it with both the contractors and insurance company assessments. If it is determined that the carriers estimate is deficient, then, with your permission, we would pursue them on your behalf. We would want to complete a contents inventory with you. If you have a lot of contents, then this can be a lengthy and time-consuming endeavor but it can generally pay off for you. Obviously photographic documentation would be made. As far as your temporary apartment, this typically falls under loss of use and/or fair rental value and/or additional living expense coverage in your policy. It would depend on your specific policy language, but in general, these coverage’s are limited to a maximum amount and time and the expense must be incurred by you after that limit is reached. Some policies have language to the effect that they will only pay for the temporary living quarters for the reasonable repair time it takes to repair your home. That can be a subjective determination. 

First of all, Tutwiler and Associates has one of the best track records when it comes to handling windstorm losses on behalf of condominium associations. A quick review of our success stories on our web site will vouch for that. We understand the special problems and needs of condo associations and in fact are gold members of the Community Association Institute. We will work with you to bring together the right team of professionals to document your windstorm losses and perfect your claim. We welcome the opportunity to meet with you and discuss options.

Maybe. A determination would need to be made whether or not you purchased a sign coverage endorsement or not. Typically carriers write the basic building policy and seek to exclude accessories like signs, awnings, antennae’s, etc, unless you have paid an additional premium and added a specific item by endorsement. In all cases it pays to read your policy.

This is a term that has been added to most property policies following litigation in California that provided coverage for a loss when one cause of a loss was covered and the other cause that was excluded occurred more or less at the same time. The courts said the whole loss was covered if one part was covered. The anti-concurrent causation clause was added to try and preclude this result. This issue was litigated in Hurricane Katrina with “slab losses” were a structure was washed /blown away. Expect to hear a great deal more about this controversial term in the next big wind/flood event. 

Prior to the 2004/2005 hurricanes their was a section of Florida primary in the then high wind zone of Dade Broward Monroe and Palm Beach counties where there was a wind/paint exclusion. After 04/05 we stared to see these endorsement added to all coastal areas. This can be big expense particularly to large structures like condo towers. It is very likely that your policy has a provision that will not allow you to use this excluded cost to apply as an offset for the large hurricane deductible. This is added insult to injury in our opinion.