On Property Insurance Claim Tips Blog

Policyholder Question on Sewer Back-up Third Party Claim

Here’s a question I was asked to answer on the United Policyholders website: 
Q. My home was contaminated by sewer on May 7 and again on May 22 this year by a prime contractor hired by a state municipality MSD Metropolitan sewer District here in Asheville North Carolina. From what I understand, this is a third-party claim. The insurance company has done absolutely nothing to help me. I have been dealing with this for the last four months with pretty much no progress until this past week. They sent their first offer on Friday which is not close to reality. Is this considered a third-party claim? I have a copy of the pollution liability policy and it does not say anything about how it will replace my contents, actual cash value or replacement cost, nor does it say anything about provisions for Additional Living Expenses. Is there a possibility that is in a different policy? I just had an environmental company do some sampling for mold and other airborne fungi to be sure this has not spread in other parts of the house because it's been so long with no cleanup and decontamination. I’d like to know if any of your professionals have experience dealing with third-party claims and sewer damage and mold contamination.Read More

Insurance Appraisals and Lawyers - A Little History Lesson

At Citizens, lawyers win, public loses” was the Tampa Bay Times featured editorial headline on Friday, September 27, 2013. This followed an earlier article in the Times “Citizens racks up millions in attorney’s fees and it denies claims” exposing the astronomical legal fees that have been paid to both plaintiff lawyers (policyholders advocates) and defense lawyers who represent the insurance companies.Read More

Insurance Claim? Don’t be afraid to Ask

I was watching one of the “Homeowners Policy & Claims Bill of Rights Working Group” meetings the other day when a segment of the meeting featured a homeowner couple who took the time to appear at the meeting and tell their story about their insurance loss and claim that resulted from an unfortunate fire in their residence.  These folks told the committee they wanted to share this experience in hopes that something good would come out of their very bad experience trying to deal with an insurance property loss on their own.

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Shrinking Citizens is a Double Edged Sword

As pointed out in the recent Herald Tribune article: Citizens Poised to Further Cull Policies,  “Florida State insurance regulators are expected to approve the removal of nearly 600,000 Citizens customers from the state's largest property insurer, which now covers some 1.2 million policyholders,” and many Tallahassee politicians are celebrating.

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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.

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Citizens Insurance and the Decision the State is Making for You to Go With the “New” Takeout Insurance Companies – A Public Adjuster’s Perspective

Almost daily we are reading in the print media about the push to depopulate Citizens Insurance Company, the State chartered (and for all practical purposes state run) insurance company. This insurance scheme was started to cover Florida homeowners when the big boys of the property insurance world cut and ran following some hurricane hits in the Sunshine State. Who would have thought that would happen given all the advertisements that were run in the 1970’s and 1980’s encouraging us to insure with whoever had the most money to spend on an advertising campaign.

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Remembering Superstorm Sandy and its Impact on the 2013 Hurricane Season

On September 11th last year, Rick and I flew to New York City for a planned meeting with Anderson Kill Loss Advisors, a group of the nation’s top public adjusters at the Manhattan law offices of Anderson Kill. The purpose of the meeting was to meet and discuss current events and future plans for this team of professional adjusters, whom we are proud to be a member.  Little did any of us know what would be coming a month and a half later. Read More

The Coming Hurricane Winds of Skyrocketing Flood Insurance Premiums

The media is finally waking up to the major increase policyholders will see in their flood insurance policies. Our public adjusters are already seeing an impact on the insurance claims market. Here’s my take based on our assistance to Superstorm Sandy victims and our dealings with the NFIP over the years.

2.4 million Floridians live less than four feet above the high tide line along our coastal shores. Given the astonishing number of properties and people this represents, the cost prohibitive increases in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and the severe ramifications that will follow, deserve more attention and debate.

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Policyholder Question on Pipe Burst, Water Leak and Mold

Q. A pipe in my attic broke which caused flooding in a down stairs hall, bedroom and bathroom. When an assessment was done, mold was found. My policy has a cap of $5,000 on mold remediation. The contractor estimates for demolition and repair that are necessary to correct water damage have been categorized as mold remediation by my insurance company.

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