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Drones and hurricane claims

On Behalf of | Jan 19, 2021 | Firm News |

Homeowners in Louisiana may find themselves reliant on insurance settlements in a hurricane’s aftermath. Fire, theft, and other perils may come to mind when concerned about damage, but the region’s history of devastating hurricanes lead many to hope they have adequate insurance in place. Insurance companies and client adjusters might take “modern” steps to assess and survey any damage. Using drones represents one such strategy, and the process could bring up some concerns.

Insurance adjusters and drones

An insurance adjuster works to assess how much damage occurred. When a home has been damaged by a hurricane, an adjuster may note that the roof, the siding, and windows suffered damage. A closer inspection could reveal that water entering the house caused additional property damage, and the damage falls under the insurance policy’s coverage.

The insurance company sends an adjuster to determine the loss, while the property owner may hire its own expert to negotiate with the insurance company. A homeowner might leave everything in the hands of the insurance company’s adjuster, a move that might prove regrettable.

The insurance company may focus more on saving money on the settlement than covering all the losses. Things could prove more challenging when the insurance company relies exclusively on a drone.

A drone might seem like a valuable tool when inspecting roof damage. The drone could hover above the house and take still photos and video footage chronicling the damage. However, there may be problems with the approach.

Incomplete assessments and low settlement offers

A drone might not capture all the damage caused by a hurricane or another incident. A human adjuster may be more thorough and uncover damage a drone might miss. If relying on incomplete assessments, the insurance company may provide the client with a weak settlement offer.

Covered clients may take legal action when an offer comes from an incomplete or inaccurate assessment. Hiring an attorney to negotiate with the insurance company might be an option. Providers may run into insurance law challenges when using drones for adjustment purposes. A drone might not perform a proper assessment, possibly leading to a lawsuit.