Hiring a Tennessee Licensed Public Insurance Adjuster to Assist with your Tornado Claim
The tornado in Nashville has caused major destruction and significantly impacted business & residential property owners. Our teams are actively engaged with property & business owners, working to help aid in the recovery claims process and are here to help you realize a fair settlement under your policy to help you recover and get your business and life back on its feet. Whenever major storm events like this occur a common question we get from callers is to explain what a Public Adjuster does and why they should hire one. Many callers have never had to deal with a property claim before and frankly have not heard of Public Adjusters. To avoid having our readers searching the web for these answers and hopefully the hype, I’ve placed the information we try to relay below.
The use of Public Adjusters: Your insurance company provides their adjuster representative at no charge. However, some policyholders would rather have a third party to objectively value their claim. Most states have created licensed Public Adjusters to serve this purpose. After a storm, you may be contacted by adjusters who have no relationship with your insurance company and charge a fee for their services. They are known as Public Adjusters. If you decide to use a Public Adjuster to help you settle your claim, this service will cost you a percentage of the total value of your settlement. Sometimes after a disaster, the percentage that Public Adjusters charge is set by the State Insurance Department. If you do decide to use a Public Adjuster, first check references and qualifications by contacting the Better Business Bureau and your State Insurance Department. Also contact the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (www.napia.com) or National Association of Independent Insurance Adjusters (www.naiia.com). The Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance regulates Public Insurance Adjusters. To check the status or verification of a Public Adjuster License click: HERE
Public Adjusters are experts on property loss adjustment who are retained by policyholders to assist in preparing, filing and adjusting insurance claims. Employed exclusively by the policyholder who has sustained an insured loss, these professionals manage every detail of the claim, working closely with the insured to provide the most equitable and prompt settlement possible. A public insurance adjuster inspects the loss site immediately, analyzes the damages, assembles claim support data, reviews the insured's coverage, determines current replacement costs, negotiates the claim amount and exclusively serves the client, not the insurance company.
1. Fighting Your Claim: You need someone that can argue your defense against the insurance company to get the best settlement on your claim and to make sure the process is done expertly and error free.
2. Experience and Skills: Handling a math problem is a cinch but understanding your cryptic insurance policy requires more experience than you have and skills that you don’t have time to acquire. An insurance claims is part science and art. Many adjusters whether it be an insurance company adjuster, independent adjuster hired by the insurance company, or a Public Adjuster all have their own techniques in estimating losses. Many adjusters will be brought in from other States to help handle the thousands of insurance claims during a disaster. This can be problematic especially if the adjuster is not knowledgeable as to the specific laws and regulations the state. So find out where your adjuster is from and ask questions!
3. Avoiding Mistakes: Placing value on the loss, identifying and accounting for possessions and valuables are facets of the claim that can be tedious but are absolutely necessary. Making one mistake when filing your insurance claim could result in not receiving adequate money for your damage.
4. Getting Paid Quickly: Policyholders are generally happy if they get paid quickly, however hindsight is always 20/20. Don’t let your insurance company force you into a settlement that is lower than what you’re entitled to. Public Adjusters see this tactic every day and can help move the claim negotiation process along more quickly so you can start your repairs faster.
5. Network of Contacts: It doesn’t matter the property damage you have incurred, a good public adjusting firm will have the right contacts in their database to be able to get the damage cleaned up and fixed very quickly. Whether it’s plumbers, contractors, roofers, mold or remediation firms, when you need to trust to someone the most, use a professional Public Adjuster to handle the intricacies of your insurance claim settlement. It will get you moving forward again.
Public Adjuster Key Benefits
- Saves you time
- Lowers your stress level during a crisis
- Negotiates your settlement
- Guides you through the entire claim recovery process, working to get you a fair settlement.
- Guides you through life & safety Issues
- Mitigation of loss & damage Guidance
- Establish a preliminary recovery plan - The claim process will take time, so plan accordingly. Make decisions that are best for your home or business to preserve your property, customers and suppliers.
- Evaluation of policy coverage - The policyholder must understand the terms and conditions of their policy, including coverage limitations, valuation methods, and their duties and responsibilities, for filing a claim. The time limitations are critical.
- Valuation of damages, claim preparation and documentation assistance
- The policyholder is required to submit detailed itemized claims, with expert reports and estimates, for the various insured categories:
Property Damage - Buildings & Contents (equipment stock, machinery, etc.)
Time Element - Business Interruption, Loss of Income, Rents, etc. Extra expense to continue normal operations
- Negotiations and settlement help - The claim will be audited in detail and adjusted by the insurance company and their experts. It is common to have differences of opinion, so prepare accordingly.
- Restoration of property & operations help - You should not proceed with the permanent work until you have an agreement with the insurer. If replacement cost coverage applies, the actual repair and rebuild decisions will affect your total claim recovery.
Tutwiler & Associates adjusters stand ready to handle tornado damage insurance claims throughout Nashville. We are here to help you start your insurance claim and get your business or residence back up and running. Contact us today by calling 615.686.2858 or click to contact our team.