On Property Insurance Claim Tips Blog

Condominium Association Insurance Claims Can Turn Sour

Condominium Association Insurance Claims Can Turn Sour

There is no questioning the devastation that a hurricane can bring.  From severe winds, flooding, wind driven rain, tornadoes, power outages, even the slightest hurricane can cause massive damage. This storm season is no different with Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria incurring property insurance claims well outside their main core. 

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Hurricane Season and a Special Concern for Condominium Community Claims

Hurricane Season and a Special Concern for Condominium Community Claims

Florida’s condominium community, it’s heads up time up for this year’s hurricane season and the escalating threat as we approach the most active time for tropical storm development. A few new releases from some of the weather pundits raised the possibility of more tropical storms this year. This is the second time this year the threat level has been raised for an increase in tropical storms in 2017. One respected weather guru who publishes a daily blog is sharing his concerns about all the weather waves moving off of Africa. So as they say, game on! 

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Public Adjuster Uses Good Property Insurance Adjusting Practices to Win a Fair Claim Settlement for Condominium Owners

Public Adjuster Uses Good Property Insurance Adjusting Practices to Win a Fair Claim Settlement for Condominium Owners

Ken and Joan spent their working lives in public service, Ken as an educator, and Joan as a nurse. It was their dream to have a vacation home in a warm climate so they purchased a condominium in Bonita Springs, Florida. A contractor error caused a pipe break in a unit above theirs and entirely flooded their home with hundreds of gallons of water. They were notified and drove down to Florida to inspect the damage and meet with their insurance company. That’s when the insurance claim problems began.

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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 Condominium Owner Insurance Claims and the Nightmare Claim Process that Often Follows

Florida Condominium Owner Insurance Claims and the Nightmare Claim Process that Often Follows
Not surprising are the calls we get from property owners living in condos, who are looking for help following property damage to their building that affected their unit. This often takes the form of damage to the unit owner’s property which often includes their personal property, i.e., contents, as well as items such as carpet, other types of floor covering, trim items such as door frames, baseboards, cabinets, and the list goes on depending on the type and severity of the damage and the wording in their condominium documents. When a covered casualty event occurs, whether it is water, fire, the dreaded “mold” word or some other peril, the finger pointing starts and in many cases, the unit owner is caught in the middle. Read More

Sarasota Condo Board Experiences Runaround Before Public Adjuster Helps Negotiate Fair Settlement

Sarasota Condo Board Experiences Runaround Before Public Adjuster Helps Negotiate Fair Settlement
The public insurance adjusters at Tutwiler & Associates work extremely hard to prove why our industry profession is so valuable to policyholders. We work with potential clients and share our knowledge to guide them in their property insurance claim decision making. We strive to educate policyholders after a serious loss when they are the most vulnerable.  Case in point involves a massive electrical fire that occurred at a Sarasota condominium last August.Read More

Policyholder Question - Flooded Condominium

Here is a question we were happy to answer as part of the expert panel for United Policyholders.

Q. My condo flooded from the unit above me caused by a leaking pipe. I have flood insurance and no homeowner insurance. Damage from water and mold is extensive. Do I need an attorney? I have been trying to work with the condo association property management and the above unit's insurance adjusters. I am getting no answers as to who pays for damages to what areas. It has been two weeks. Loss has occurred in Florida and I live in Utah. I am keeping a journal and have begun cleanup and dry out procedures after pipe repair to stop water leak. Click to see read the answer.

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Condominium Pipe Leak Damages Lower Units. It’s more complicated than you think

Water damage to lower units is a common insurance claim we frequently see in condominium communities. Believe it or not, this can become a complicated claim depending on where the leak originated, the specific damage that was caused by the leak and if the cause of the damage is the result of someone’s negligence or just faulty plumbing. We came across a good overview of this situation in a Herald Tribune article and encourage you to read it. Regardless, make sure you quickly contact all parties if this type of insurance loss occurs and consider putting a public adjuster on your team to avoid claim denials and proper compensation.

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Gary A. Poliakoff Esq. – A Condominium & Homeowners Association Pioneer and Advocate

I was very sorry to read in the South Florida Business Journal about the untimely passing of Attorney Gary Poliakoff.  Gary Poliakoff was a giant in the field of shared community and condominium living. Along with his partner Allen Becker, they founded Becker & Poliakoff headquartered in Ft Lauderdale Florida that over the years has become a legal juggernaut. The name Becker & Poliakoff has become a brand in and of itself and is synonymous with any issues involving communal property living.  Read More

Post Loss Obligations of the Policyholder - Condominium Boards Need to Communicate

This 42 page decision Biscayne Cove Condominium Association, Inc. v. QBE Ins. Corp., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 5194 (S.D. Fla. Jan. 14, 2013) makes for some very interesting reading. The case was one of those late blooming Hurricane Wilma condo claims that I suspect contributed to the thinking that a change in law regarding the time a policyholder has to file a claim might be a good idea. You can draw your own conclusions about what went on in this case (I know I have) but one of the clear take-aways is that in this case the Judge was not buying what was being sold.

As an aside, the 30% rule this public adjuster was relying on and thought existed drew some chuckles in a meeting our firm recently attended with a group of condo lawyers. Seriously, there are some very interesting points made in the Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law. As the old saying goes; “it’s not my monkey and it’s not my circus” thankfully! 

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