For any property owner, you have property insurance. Whether you own a residential home, a vacation home or commercial property, you are legally obligated to have insurance on your property. You bought into an insurance package, you have been paying your premiums, and now you have to make a claim.
By all rights, assuming your claim is legitimate and covered under your policy, the insurance company should reimburse you for the costs you incur repairing the damages. However, there are far too many cases in which policy holders are denied coverage of their legitimate claims.
Not getting what you’ve been paying for
These are the three primary ways that most property insurance claims are not handled appropriately by insurance companies:
- Denied claims: When you make a claim, the insurance company will send out an adjuster who will look at the property damage, ask you questions and determine what your claim is worth. In many cases, the adjuster will “determine” that for some reason or another the claim is not covered under the policy and you will get nothing.
- Underpayment: More often, the adjuster will look over your claim and accept the claim. But the payment you receive will be far less than what your claim is worth. For example, on a roof claim from tornado damage, your insurance might offer you half of what any roofing company of any quality would charge you. This is a clear example of underpayment.
- Delays: In many cases, insurance companies have their preferred vendors for construction jobs. They will tell you that they will work with the construction company and take care of everything. But then nothing happens, possibly for months. During that time, further damage can occur because the problem wasn’t fixed promptly, and your family could be exposed to further risk as a result, as well.
Although these examples of failure on the part of insurance companies are quite common, they are not legal. Your insurance company has a legal obligation to fulfill the contractual agreement in your insurance policy. If that means covering a property damage claim completely, that is exactly what the insurance company needs to do.
In most cases, getting the insurance company to pay what it owes a policyholder requires the help of experienced insurance attorneys.