What Do I Do If My Claim for Hurricane Damage is Denied?

October 31, 2022 General

Hurricanes can be devastating for homeowners. They cause untold damage and leave many homes uninhabitable until they are repaired. Fortunately, in most hurricane-prone states like Florida, homeowners have insurance policies in place to cover the damages caused by hurricanes. When these policies promptly pay the amount needed to cover the necessary repairs, homeowners are able to fix their homes and move on with their lives. In cases where the insurance company does not pay, however, homeowners are often left in limbo, stuck with a house that needs significant work and an insurance company that won’t pay. It is a stressful place to be. Fortunately, there are steps homeowners can take to have the insurance company pay the amount they are contractually obligated to pay under the terms of the insurance policy. 

Understand the Denial

When insurance denies a claim for damages, they will issue a reason as to why they are denying the claim. The homeowner should carefully read the denial reason as well as the insurance policy to understand why the denial occurred. If it was for a reason that can be easily remedied, such as submitting further proof of the damage, obtaining claim approval may still be a rather simple process. In other cases, the fight may have just begun.

File a Complaint With the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation

Homeowners with erroneously denied claims for insurance coverage may want to file a complaint with the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation. The insurance company is required to respond to filed formal complaints. 

Alternative Dispute Resolution

The state of Florida also provides non-binding mediation services when a policyholder has their claim denied by their home insurance company. The homeowner, a representative from the insurance company, and a mediator that has been licensed by the Department of Financial Services (DFS) will meet and attempt to agree to a resolution. The mediator is an unbiased third party that assists in facilitating an agreement between the parties. 

Speak With a Knowledgeable Attorney at Martin Law Firm, P.L.

Speaking with an attorney can be the best action a homeowner whose claim has been denied can take. An experienced lawyer will be able to read the policy in light of the current laws and regulations and know what the insurance company is and is not responsible for paying. They will be able to speak with the insurance companies representatives and lawyers, and if that does not resolve the issue, they can file a lawsuit. In some cases, the attorney may even be able to make the insurance company pay their fees so the homeowner does not have to. 

Call Martin Law Firm, P.L. To Learn More

Contact our firm to speak with one of our lawyers to find out how we can help you when the insurance company has denied your claim for hurricane damages.