Tell Them You are Going to Hire a Public Adjuster
Ran into an old friend and his wife at a restaurant we both frequent the other night. Bob is a property manager and my firm has not only represented his family but also some of the properties he has managed over the years. I had not seen him for a few weeks and he reminded me of his call to me some weeks back about a water leak in his home. It seems the shower pan had given out and when the leak finally showed up, the damage was pretty extensive. He called his insurance agent who told him the water damage would not be covered due to the language the insurance lobbyists had recently pushed through about water damage that is over 14 days old.
When Bob asked me about this draconian exclusion, I said “yes,” that’s the current law. While unconscionable, especially for our winter residents that own condos and homes in Florida whose homes may go unattended during the summer months, the Office of Insurance Regulation rolled over on the consumer and let this language through which is found in most property insurance policies.
Bob has a dislike for insurance companies and is not one to take it on the chin. He called the claim department and told them that if they did not pay for his water damage, which was discovered when the leak manifested itself (his policy does cover water damage), he was going to get a public adjuster.
Guess what? The company actually changed their mind and paid for his loss! Folks if your insurance company is giving you a hard time, tell them you are going to hire a public adjuster. While never guaranteed, I certainly have seen this work many times in the past. I am happy to let you use my firm’s name without any cost or obligation.
Finally, the Honorable Jeff Atwater, Florida’s Chief Financial Officer, perhaps said it best at his recent appearance at the Florida Association of Public Insurance Adjusters recent symposium. Mr. Atwater said, “the work of public adjusting is defined by the noble work of helping somebody navigate a path they have no way of knowing how to navigate themselves, and don’t believe they can.”