Home insurance and all other forms of insurance coverage are not without disputes. Homeowners who suffer a loss often find themselves with insurance adjusters who fail to approve their claim. Florida is no stranger to homeowners insurance disputes. At VG Law Group, our Orlando homeowners insurance claims lawyers are ever ready to help clients get the settlement they deserve.
According to Investopedia, homeowners insurance is a form of property insurance covering losses and damages to a home. It also covers damages to furnishings and other assets in a residence. Homeowner's insurance includes liability coverage against accidents in the home or property.
Generally, the insurance coverage covers interior damage, exterior damage, loss of personal assets, and injury to third parties on the property. When a person claims any of the preceding, the homeowner will first pay a deductible, before the insurance company covers the rest.
Common homeowners insurance claims cover:
Orlando and other parts of Florida are not strangers to natural disasters. Tornado and hurricane damage have ravaged homes for years. This is why homeowners take out insurance policies to protect their property.
Below are some of the most common types of property insurance policies in Florida:
In each of these policies, the coverage types are as follows:
When a home suffers structural damage, sinkhole damage, smoke damage, other forms of natural disaster or loss, the owner has the right to bring a claim to the insurance company. First, the house owner must ensure they have a valid insurance claim. It means the insurance policyholder must not claim in bad faith.
A valid claims process will involve the following:
Note that the property owner would also provide a recorded statement under oath. Before doing the preceding or the above, consult an experienced insurance law attorney. Many disputes with insurance companies are from information provided by unprepared and informed policyholders.
Policyholders who misplace their policy of insurance can request a certified copy from the insurance carrier. Under Florida law, the insurer has 30 days to provide the copy upon request. An insurance attorney with extensive experience can also quicken the process.
Additionally, insurance companies must accept or deny claims within 90 days. If they accept the claim, they have 20 days to issue a payment. But in practice, this is not always the case, as insurers are reluctant to pay homeowners.
Following the right claims process and having a valid claim does not guarantee that the insurance company will grant benefits. Adjusters are looking for ways to save money, so they are more likely to reject a claim than grant it.
One common reason for denial is when the policy does not cover the damage. It means that if a policy is for wind damage, the insurer will not pay for water or flood damage. Another reason why claims get denied is a time-lapse. A property owner who wastes time filing a claim would likely have it statute-barred.
Another reasonable basis for claims denial is damage not exceeding the deductible. Furthermore, if the policyholder misses a payment or fails to update the insurance company about a change in circumstance, the claim for benefits would fail.
Other reasons why homeowners claims get denied are:
A claim denial is not the end of the process. By enlisting an Orlando property insurance lawyer's help, a homeowner can file an insurance lawsuit against the insurance company. The insurance claim attorney would examine the case to find the reasons for the denial.
Whether or not the insurance company has a legitimate reason for denying a valid homeowner insurance claim, it is wise to get a lawyer involved at this point. Orlando homeowners insurance claim lawyers would handle everything regarding the claims process.
The legal service includes gathering evidence, accessing them, and trying to negotiate outside a courtroom. If the negotiations fail, the attorney will file a lawsuit, and if it doesn't succeed, they will fail an appeal. The lawyer would also provide advice on the best time to file a lawsuit.
In Florida, homeowners have four years to commence an action for a denied homeowners insurance claim. The time starts counting from the date the incident occurred. Most people are unaware of this legal provision, hence the need for experienced lawyers. Furthermore, an attorney would attend all meetings and ensure they get the maximum settlement available. They will explain legal terms and simplify them.
It's hard to lose a home to natural disasters or have someone suffer injuries on your property. It's equally more difficult when the insurance company that is meant to alleviate the hardship fails to do so without justifiable reasons. Trying to get answers alone can be daunting, but with our help, things would be easier.
At VG Law Group, we pride ourselves on fighting for those who can't and getting them the help they need. Our clients are our focus, and we dedicate our time and resources to getting them justice. We can do the same for you. Contact us today for a free case review.