Truth vs. Fiction
I can handle my claim on my own.
Florida insurance law is complex and has a lot of specific requirements and timeframes that can serve to deprive an insured of an otherwise covered claim. It is important that you hire a law firm that focuses its practice on property insurance claims.
I can’t afford an attorney or the cost of filing a lawsuit.
Typically, our fees depend upon the success of the lawsuit. If we are unsuccessful, we do not recover fees. If we are successful, Florida law requires your insurance company to pay our fees and costs. In other words, our clients are not responsible for paying us fees or reimbursing us for any costs incurred regardless of the results.
If I hire an attorney, the insurance company will only fight harder and will force the case to trial.
Most of our cases settle without having go to trial. We have a proven strategy that moves our cases forward and ultimately lead to settlement.
The insurance company is not going to offer any more money just because I hired a lawyer.
We normally settle our cases in amounts well beyond what the insurance company previously offered.
I don’t want my insurance premiums to increase.
Unfortunately, rate increases are going to happen regardless of whether you file a claim. In 2021, Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation approved rate increases for 105 insurance companies. Rate increases ranged from 12%-31%.
I don’t want my insurance company to drop me because I filed a claim.
Florida law prohibits an insurance company from cancelling a policy while a hurricane claim is pending. Once repairs are made, most insurance companies will continue to insure the property.
I should say as little as possible to my insurance company.
Your policy requires you to cooperate with the insurance company’s adjustment of your claim, including showing the property and possibly submitting sworn testimony. Failure to do so might allow the carrier to deny the claim even though it is covered.
Prepare for the Next Hurricane
Maintain your property.
Florida insurance law is complex and has a lot of specific requirements and timeframes that can serve to deprive an insured of an otherwise covered claim. It is important that you care for your property and perform routine maintenance.
Protect your property.
It is important to protect your property from damage – before and after the Hurricane. If you have damage that if left unaddressed it will worsen, then you must make the necessary repairs.
You must provide your insurance company with prompt notice of property damage. Even if you do not believe the damage is significant or that it will not be more than your deductible, you still must notify your insurance company.
Keep accurate records.
You should keep proof of any repairs made before or after the Hurricane. This will help the claims process go much smoother.
Photos and video.
Almost all of our cases involve some sort of refusal of the insurance company to pay because they claim the damage is not related to the Hurricane. When our clients took pictures and videos, we have seen a dramatic decrease in the time for which we are able to settle their claim.
Under Florida law, your insurance company must pay or deny your claim within 90 days from when they were notified of the damage.
Remember, you do not have to accept your insurance company’s decision on a denied or paid claim. We will review your case for free and advise you of what your next steps should be.