It has been a hot dry summer in the Houston area and storm damage to their homes is the last thing homeowners are thinking about. Unfortunately, weather forecasts for today and later this week mention street flooding and damaging winds. We hope you stay safe from the storm and from an insurance claim denial that leaves you desperately frustrated afterwards.
Insurance companies are not always as accommodating as we’d expect. Sometimes they drag out or deny claims outright even when the claim is legitimate. When the insurance company is wrongfully denying claim compensation, call The Finman Law Firm. We have experience working with Insurance companies to resolve wrongful claim denials.
In Texas, there are state-specific rights given to homeowners. The Texas Department of Insurance is a free resource for every Texas homeowner. But there are some simple steps you can take if your insurance claim is denied. When You Receive an Insurance Claim Denial
You did everything right, but your Insurance company is still denying your claim. You made sure the damage was sustained by a covered risk. You know this because you reviewed your home policy coverage every year. You filed the claim within the time allowed, so you know you didn’t miss the filing deadline. You fully documented the damage sustained, backing it up with video and photos. Every documentation item submitted contained your policy and claim number on it. There were no hidden or misstated facts in the claim, and you have always maintained your property. So why was your claim denied, and what do you do next?
1. Follow Up With Your Insurance Agent or Company
Review the claim you filed before you call your insurer again. Figure out whether you need to improve the damage and loss documentation or evidence. Photos, videos, estimates and receipts for items damaged are all part of the loss evidence you should include with a claim. Once you check your initial work, call your agent or insurance company claim department.
Verify the reason for your insurance claim denial. Ask if your claim can be reviewed again if you have new evidence or ask for the adjuster to reexamine the property. Maybe the adjuster made a mistake. It won’t help your case to accuse anyone of this, but ask for their help. They may even agree to send a different adjuster to check your damage.
2. Have an Independent Appraisal And Repair Estimate
The purpose of having an independent appraisal and repair assessment is to get an objective estimate of the damage you’re trying to repair. If instead of an insurance claim denial, you received a low settlement offer, there is some risk when hiring an independent appraiser. The third party will either confirm the current settlement offer validity, or help you argue for a fairer offer. In the latter situation, contact your insurance agent or claims department and tell them about the independent estimate. If you need to, take it up the management ladder and ask them to re-evaluate your case. An independent appraisal will generally cost between $300 to $500 and may be deemed to be influenced by you since you hired them. For that reason, many homeowners option to skip this step and speak to an attorney.
3. Hire an Attorney to for Negotiations or Complaint Filing
Sometimes you just can’t reach an agreement with an insurance company on a claim. Insurance companies tend to respond sooner when a complaint is filed. Even receiving a letter from an attorney can motivate companies to open settlement discussions. Still, getting served notice of a complaint is a strong catalyst inducing settlement negotiations.
When the damage repair costs will be extensive, hiring an attorney can be extremely cost effective. Statistically, settlement results when a lawyer is involved are faster and larger. Contact the Finman Law Firm here to set up your free consultation call. Get informed on how to protect your Insurance claim denial options.
Please note: This article is for general information purposes only and is not meant to be construed as legal advice. Only an attorney licensed in your state can offer you legal advice, and only after talking with you and gathering specific information about your situation. If, after reading the general information in this article, you think that you need legal assistance, please contact a lawyer in your area for legal advice.