On Property Insurance Claim Tips Blog

Adjuster Education – Reinsurance and Assessment Explained

Adjuster Education – Reinsurance and Assessment Explained
When involved with complex insurance claims (believe me, nowadays with all these new forms and restrictions, they are all complex and controversial), the policy language and the facts of the loss all must be taken into account to apply them to the coverage in order to get the correct payment to the policyholder.  But this may only be the beginning of what you need to know. Other issues face the adjuster which may be outside of your typical daily sphere of experience and knowledge.Read More

Florida Property Insurance - Good News or Bad News - You Decide

Florida Property Insurance - Good News or Bad News - You Decide

I read with a great deal of interest comments that were made by the big chiefs at a hearing held by the Office of Insurance Regulation in Tallahassee concerning the rate request Citizens Insurance Company was asking for in the South Florida market. In my view the back-and-forth discussion that took place on August 25 is newsworthy as are some of the back-story items not covered or published. Here is a link from the Insurance Journal that reported on the August 25th hearing. 

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Adjuster Education - Turtle Glass Building Codes and the Impact on Beachfront Property Owners and Carriers

Adjuster Education - Turtle Glass Building Codes and the Impact on Beachfront Property Owners and Carriers
As often happens in the adjusting business, you think you have seen or know most of the issues. But then a surprise comes along and you realize there is always something new in the business of property insurance adjusting.  To put it another way, you don’t know what you don’t know.  So here is what I didn’t know that I needed to know. This new revelation came this week when meeting with my client in his gulf front estate in Siesta Key, Florida.Read More

The New Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

The New Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

Well, maybe not new, but things are changing and we have seen this coming for some time. In our last blog Tampa Bay Residents Wait on FEMA we noted that staff from FEMA were in the area to inspect the flooding that resulted from three weeks of intense rain. Attempting not to jinx the process, I held off offering my opinion on the likely outcome of the FEMA inspection. But now we know FEMA has turned down requests from State and local officials to provide financial assistance to homeowners and businesses damaged due to the flooding.

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Windstorm Forecasting - National Hurricane Center predictions with Tropical Storm Erika drawing criticism

Windstorm Forecasting - National Hurricane Center predictions with Tropical Storm Erika drawing criticism

An excellent Tampa Bay Times article, Did the National Hurricane Center Flub Erika? aired some of the discord between the National Hurricane Center folks and others, some of whom are well-respected meteorologists.  The chief complaint seems to be that the reported track of the storm varied considerably as Erika moved up from the Caribbean. As a result, this may have eroded the public’s confidence in future NHC modeling and predictions not to mention set in motion a lot of costly emergency plans. When the Governor declares a state of emergency, things happen, costs are incurred and people’s lives are disrupted.  I suspect we may hear about the actual economic cost businesses and governments, state and local, incur when a state of emergency is declared.  If not published, I hope some enterprising reporter will dig this information out as it is news the public needs to know and should be out in the public domain. 

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Tropical Strom Erika - Pay close attention to the experts and prepare

Tropical Strom Erika - Pay close attention to the experts and prepare

An email from a client down in the Leeward Islands this week prompts me to write this blog.  While Tropical Storm Erika is not forecast to cause a lot of damages to the Windward Island Chain is was clearly a reminder to these folks about last years storm.  Here is what my client had to say: “waited in line at the bank for over an hour, it was packed, the island is in a panic mode because of the 2nd tropical storm that is approaching and especially because of Hurricane Gonzalo last year.”

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Tampa Bay Residents Wait on FEMA

Tampa Bay Residents Wait on FEMA

FEMA inspected flood damage on Thursday and Friday to determine if the Tampa Bay area will qualify for Federal Flood Damage Assistance. It appears the magic number is that damage must total $26 million statewide.  In the meantime, home and business owners can’t simply wait and hope for assistance and need to both document their losses and do the best they can to mitigate any further damage. If assistance does come, it’s never too early to educate yourself about FEMA’s Assistance program. Here are some valuable links to help you recover and understand FEMA’s process.

Flood Recovery

FEMA Individual Assistance

Check FEMA Disaster Assistance Qualification

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Tampa Flood Homeowners Should Beware of Mold – Is it Covered?

Tampa Flood Homeowners Should Beware of Mold – Is it Covered?
Those who experienced any type of water intrusion from the recent Tampa Bay rain and flooding may experience mold infiltration. When claims are delayed and repairs put on hold it can become a real problem as mold can grow unseen for months and create a serious health hazard. In the past, mold damage claims were covered under most property insurance when it resulted from a covered peril, such as a sudden plumbing leak, fire control, storm or other cause covered by your property insurance policy. However, some insurance carriers have been removing or scaling back the coverage from their policy forms regardless if it results from a covered peril. In some instances, the insurance companies offer a limited coverage for mold and fungus for an additional premium. Read More

Ever Wonder What Happens to Your Insurance Claim Once the Adjuster Leaves?

Ever Wonder What Happens to Your Insurance Claim Once the Adjuster Leaves?
Many people might be surprised that having an adjuster look at your claim is only the beginning of the insurance claim process. Remember, the field adjuster that inspects your property may not be an employee of the insurance company. They are typically independent adjusters on contract and typically are paid a set fee or percentage for each claim they handle. This is especially true during disaster situations when there are so many claims to adjust. You should ask them what firm they are with when they come to inspect your property and note how thorough they are recording your damage and if they are “listening” to you. Read More

Tampa Flood Victims Need to Educate Themselves About Water Restoration Work – Be Careful What you Sign!

Tampa Flood Victims Need to Educate Themselves About Water Restoration Work – Be Careful What you Sign!
As Tampa area businesses and homeowners deal with the serious flood and water damage, they will need the help of a water restoration firm to clean-up and dry out their property. Once local authorities give the all clear and it’s safe to return, mitigation efforts should be started immediately to avoid further damage or mold issues. If insured for the loss, you will find that most insurance policies require that you take reasonable and necessary measures to protect and preserve your property from further damage. This can be a difficult and challenging undertaking that requires decisions often involving a great deal of money at a time when your insurance adjuster may not have seen your loss or given the OK to start the dry-out or restoration process. Our recommendation is to hire the restoration company to do the drying and clean-up work only. You can then get quotes for reconstruction once things are sorted out with your insurance company. If possible, have the restoration company give you the scope of work and pricing in writing and then give it to the insurance adjuster or send it the insurance company for their approval. If possible, schedule a meeting at the site with all parties present. If this is not practical, make sure you take pictures of the damage and document all expenses for your insurance company. If you don’t document your damages, the insurance adjuster may not include it in the damage assessment. Read More