On Property Insurance Claim Tips Blog

 
     

Policyholder Question – What do I do when the insurance company won’t honor the roof damage estimates they told me to get and only want to pay for a partial repair?

Policyholder Question – What do I do when the insurance company won’t honor the roof damage estimates they told me to get and only want to pay for a partial repair?

Thank you to our Orlando Public Adjuster Brad Barrett for answering the following question:

Q. I had damage to my roof during a storm. Shingles blown off as well as some hail. Insurance told me to get 3 estimates which I did and then sent their adjuster out and he wrote me a check.  The 3 estimates said I had wind and hail damage and so did the check from carrier but the estimates said I needed the whole roof replaced and the carrier said I only needed the 1 corner repaired where shingles blew off. What should I do?

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Hurricane Season 2016 – Increased Threat Forecast

Hurricane Season 2016 – Increased Threat Forecast

If not here, then where? Not to be an alarmist but I assume most folks who pay attention to the weather folks as well as the local and national news likely would not have missed the most recent update from NOAA on their forecast for the balance of this year’s hurricane season. Yes, the tropical storms count just went up, as it seems a number of factors that are monitored and used to help weather experts calculate risk exposure from tropical storms are causing concerns in that the balance of this season will be more active in terms of tropical storms as well as the potential for one or more major hurricanes. All this begs the question: Will landfall occur causing damages not seen in Florida since 2005?

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Policyholder Question – Refusal to Pay Insurance Claim and Withholding Appraisal Award Check

Policyholder Question – Refusal to Pay Insurance Claim and Withholding Appraisal Award Check

The following is an insurance claim question we answered for a policyholder through the United Policyholders Ask an Expert Forum

Q. I live in Florida and have had an extensive water damage/mold claim that I hired a public adjuster to handle. The insurance company invoked appraisal and the out-of-state umpire determined that mold was accountable for $15,000 of damage although our mold remediation bill totaled $9,500 (we have a mold cap of $10,000 per claim). Secondly, the bathroom tile floor was damaged during remediation and was included as part of the umpire's award. However, the insurance company is refusing to pay the $4,300 floor tile repair portion of the award stating that I must abrogate against the mold remediation company to recoup that loss. Third, my public adjuster is holding the check issued by the insurance company hostage, insisting that I pay his fee prior to endorsing it over to the mortgage company. Please help!.....click to see answer.

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Public Adjuster Offers Insurance Claim Advice to West Virginia Flood Victims

Public Adjuster Offers Insurance Claim Advice to West Virginia Flood Victims

Anticipating the 100 year flood event that occurred in my native southern West Virginia was the last thing on my mind when I wrote and published my recent blog Troubled Waters – Insurance Claims Under Attack, about the “Troubled Water Claims” phenomena we are currently experiencing in Florida. But given the fact that Florida’s water problems and West Virginia’s terrible flooding disaster have one common denominator - water, I thought it would be helpful and hopefully educational to distinguish a flood event versus a water loss since these terms are often misused in the property insurance world. In addition, for those who do have flood insurance, we want to share some knowledge and information in the form of tips from my firm’s extensive experience in water/flood losses including our most recent work handling Super Storm Sandy flood claims in New York.

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Troubled Waters - Water Insurance Claims Under Attack

Troubled Waters - Water Insurance Claims Under Attack
Non-weather related water loss insurance claims in Florida are on the rise. So says Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater who heads up the Florida Department of Financial Services. The problem is so great that his Florida Consumer Advocate, Ms. Sha’ Ron James called for a summit and invited all stakeholders to attend. 

Mr. Atwater is not the only one sounding the alarm on water damage claim issues and its companion Assignment of Benefits (AOB). Based on my following the news on this hot topic it seems most insurance carriers in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach county areas are all in agreement that the situation is getting out of control and in fact may be critical, requiring rate increases and further reductions in insurance property policy coverages for water losses.

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Managed Repair Tips and Some Personal Observations from My Recent Trip to the Caribbean

Managed Repair Tips and Some Personal Observations from My Recent Trip to the Caribbean
First I want to share some atmospheric observations and conditions that are clearly changing in the Caribbean and may play into the El Niño, La Niña narrative. On my trip last week to the Leeward Island of St Maarten I had the opportunity to visit with old clients, friends and observe changes that have occurred since my last trip in 2015. 

Parts of the Caribbean including the island of St Maarten/St Martin and South America particularly Venezuela have been experiencing severe drought over the last year. The locals I have talked with all contribute this drought to the El Niño weather conditions. But the good news is that the atmosphere seems to be returning to a more normal condition as the rains are returning and at least in the Leeward Islands the vegetation is starting to return to its lush green color one would expect to see on a tropical island. Unfortunately this drought has not been without its cost as many coconut palms and tropical floral have withered and died. This is a result of no measurable rain for a seven-month period.

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Fire Claim Settled for 200% Above Initial Insurance Company Offer

Fire Claim Settled for 200% Above Initial Insurance Company Offer
This was a great day for this highly decorated Vietnam War Veteran and his wonderful wife. A recipient of a Purple Heart and 2 Bronze Stars with Valor, this couple tragically lost their home to fire 9-months ago. After receiving insufficient offers to settle their claim and months of delay, we were finally able to negotiate a 200% increase over and above the insurance company's initial offer. And to think that the insurance company adjuster discouraged them from hiring a public adjuster! Read More

Managed Repair and Its Forbearer Option to Repair

Managed Repair and Its Forbearer Option to Repair

The following is a short primer and history lesson for the insured property consumer on these two fool’s errands. For those of us in the property insurance adjusting business, we see the storm clouds gathering given all the recent rhetoric about allowing a policyholder’s insurance company to repair their property following a covered loss.  Given our knowledge and experience, we know the likely outcome of this latest scheme to pump up underwriting profits, but my guess is not many laymen do.  Make no mistake about it, your policy premiums will not drop if these managed repair programs being touted as a savior for you and the insurance industry is approved by the Tallahassee regulators. The irony is that managed repair and its stepchild “option to repair” will most likely be bad for both the insured and the insurer. So given what may be the inevitable, let’s examine both of these repair schemes. 

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The Trouble with Insurance Company Managed Repair Claims Programs

The Trouble with Insurance Company Managed Repair Claims Programs
Insurance companies have started exercising their options to repair under many of their contracts. What this means is that they are bringing in contractors of their choice to fix the damages resulting from a property loss they cover. Let’s be honest.  They have a right to do this, but it often isn’t in the best interest of their customers when they choose to do so. Why?Read More

Managed Repair Insurance Claim Programs – The Real Cost

Managed Repair Insurance Claim Programs – The Real Cost
A great deal of information is being published regarding some insurance companies’ plans to implement so called “Managed Repair” programs. The rationale is that they will reduce costs (and I assume increase profits) by partnering with restoration contractors and some independent adjusting companies who supposedly will oversee the work and provide some sort of due diligence. This will lead to the latest scheme being proposed to a reduction in the cost of insurance premiums. So the most important questions we should be asking are: What’s the real cost to the policyholder and will rate increases continue despite these managed repair programs?Read More