On Property Insurance Claim Tips Blog

Policyholder Question – Recovery and Reconstruction from Hurricane Matthew Demolition

Policyholder Question – Recovery and Reconstruction from Hurricane Matthew Demolition

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

Q. I live in coastal SC. January 8, 2017 is the three-month anniversary of Hurricane Matthew which caused extensive wind and flood damage. On October 10, 2016, the community association hired restoration company was on site demolishing and removing drywall, appliances, insulation, furniture from 32 townhomes and condos. Approximately ten 8x12 foot piles of damaged property were hauled to a landfill. WMC, LLC changed managers three times in these three months. We have received 4 or 5 letters requesting patience. We have not received a construction start date, information on what buildings will be repaired, order of repair, the construction companies, cost, or timeframe. I was advised to find an aggressive SC flood insurance and homeowners association attorney. We are running out of "loss of use" paying for a rental home. Please advise.

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Florida Panhandle Flood Victims without Flood Insurance Still Have Options

Watching some of the video clips posted on the Pensacola News Journal website that shows the extensive flood damage in Pensacola, Destin, Ft. Walton Beach and surrounding areas, I was reminded of the thousands of homes flooded in Super Storm Sandy and the insurance claims that ensued. The one common denominator both events share is the large amount of debris piled up in the front yards of neighborhoods. Those piles of personal property, drywall and other interior building components are the tell-tale signs of flood damage.  Looking at the homes and buildings from the street or from the air in a lot of cases would not reveal the extent of damage as roofs, windows, and exterior building cladding were still intact.


 

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Panhandle Flood Victims Need to Understand the Nuances of Flood Insurance

For those who have National Flood Insurance, we encourage you to review and pay close attention to your flood policy’s terms and conditions. The policies issued by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) are unique because they fall under a Federal Government program with its own rules and regulations. As an example, the NFIP policy requires you to file a proof-of-loss within 60 days of the flood event. In layman terms, you must have figured out your loss and arrived at a sum certain amount to put on a document called a “proof of loss” and have it submitted to the appropriate person handling your claim. Unless this time period (60 Days) is waived by an authorized official of FEMA/NFIP the claim may be denied in total for failure to comply with the policy terms and conditions.

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Ten Mistakes Florida Panhandle Flooding Victims Should Avoid with their Insurance Claim

Extreme Florida weather has caused widespread wind, water and flood damage in Pensacola, Destin, Gulf Breeze and Ft. Walton and has also brought some flooding to the Tampa and St. Petersburg area. This will require that many residential and commercial policyholders submit an insurance claim. The public adjusters at Tutwiler & Associates urge policyholders to take the proper steps to protect their claim and avoid settlement problems.
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Policyholder Question: Can I Refuse Cleaning and Inventory Services from my Insurer?

Here is an insurance claim question that we answered as a contributing member of insurance claim experts for United Policyholders who advocates for property owners. 

Q. Can the insurance company force you to use an outside vendor to inventory your personal contents rather than allow you to do it yourself?  Can you refuse cleaning and inventory services that an adjuster is trying to make you use?

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The 2014 Florida Legislative Session and the Insured Property Owners Bill of Rights Legislation

As we approach the midpoint for this year’s legislative session in Tallahassee, things are not looking good for a key piece of legislation championed by Chief Financial Officer, Jeff Atwater.  Briefly, his push for a policyholder’s “Bill of Rights” came out of a number of formal meetings chaired by the then DFS consumer advocate.  The meetings were held by an eclectic group of stakeholders who had an interest in the adjusting process ostensibly to air issues that policyholders were complaining about following a loss.

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Policyholder Question about Mold in Apartment due to Air Conditioning

Q. My tenant reported mold in a house that is 6 years old. We had a company test and they said the mold was caused by the a/c, due to a low refrigerant level, which caused high humidity levels in the house. At first, the insurance company said we were covered. But when the tenants request reimbursement for a medical x-ray, which showed a spot on the lung, the insurance said we were not covered. They said it was not a covered peril. They said that the a/c caused the 70% humidity which caused the mold. The remediation estimates are in excess of $30k and it appears there will be a medical claim. There were 69 days involved from the time the tenants first noticed the mold until they vacated the house. Also, the tenants’ personal items are supposed to be discarded. Am I responsible for that? The lease required them to have renters insurance but this is the second year of the lease and they did not renew it after the first year. Also, I have seen web ads for a mold bomb fogger that is supposed to be approved by the EPA. It is from Biocide Labs. Has anyone ever used it?

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Policyholder Question: Water Damage Claim and the Restoration Company’s Cleanup Bill, Who Pays & How Do You Get It Paid?

Q. I had water damage in my house due to an over flowing toilet. My insurance company said it would pay $8,000 to the restoration company that did the clean-up. The problem is that the restoration company who did the water extraction sent me a bill for $36,000. The insurance company sent me a check for $8,050.  Should I mediate or go the appraisal route?Read More

Insurance Companies Using Preferred Contractors to Settle Claims Not in Policyholders Best Interest

Insurance Companies Using Preferred Contractors to Settle Claims Not in Policyholders Best Interest

A policyholder in South Carolina recently wrote us about a fire claim turned nightmare. When notified of a claim, insurance companies will sometimes send out their preferred vendor as a way to provide fast service but also to control costs and prevent the policyholder from hiring their own vendor, since they have contracted reduced rates with these vendors.

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