Hurricanes bring life-threatening dangers with their heavy winds and rain. Louisiana home and business owners also know that these brutal storms could wreak havoc on properties. Insurance claims provide the means for property owners to recover money to address their losses. Unfortunately, hurricane insurance claims can become more complicated than you initially expected.
Reviewing the homeowner’s insurance policy
A homeowner’s insurance policy likely has provisions that address hurricane-related damage. Wind damage, water damage from leaks, and other covered losses may appear in the insurance contract. The insured should not make any assumptions about what appears in the policy. Exclusions could apply, and there might be conditions.
A deductible might apply with wind damages. A $5,000 deductible means the insurance policy only covers costs beyond the first $5,000. The company’s adjuster may come back with an assessment that might seem low, creating a potential disagreement.
Exclusions in the policy may not address flood or sewer back-up catastrophes. Questions may arise about whether flooding, back-ups, or leaks caused the loss. An insurance company and the insured could end up in a dispute.
Regardless, an insurance company has an obligation to pay a legitimate claim. Accusations of “bad faith” may arise if the provider doesn’t pay, and litigation might soon follow.
Working with an attorney to address insurance issues
Long before filing any claims, it might prove necessary to determine what the homeowner policy does or does not cover. An attorney might review the policy for a client and not notice anything concerning. If the policy excludes something, then seeking a rider or an additional policy, such as separate flood insurance coverage, could be recommended.
An attorney may handle negotiations with an insurance company. The attorney could work to procure a reasonable settlement. Customers who deal directly with an insurance company might not be experienced enough to procure a fair settlement amount.
The settlement may need to cover extensive property damage. So, it benefits a homeowner to get the highest award possible.
Hurricane damage could lead to significant financial losses. Working with an attorney might be necessary when experiencing troubles with the claims process.