Because not every homeowner’s insurance policy includes flood coverage, water damage claims are often mistakenly rejected even when they are valid. If you’re struggling with this situation, this guide will show you how to get insurance to pay for water damage.
Understand Your Policy
When you’re wondering what to do after water damage, start by reviewing your homeowner’s insurance policy. It should spell out the types of damage that are covered. In general, policies that do not include flood insurance cover the effects of sudden internal water damage. This category could include an overflowing appliance or plumbing fixture, a burst or frozen pipe, a leaking roof or damage caused by extinguishing a fire. Damage from snowstorms and heavy rains is also typically covered.
Many policies categorize water damage as flood damage when the water involved first touches the ground. This also rules out damage caused by ground seepage. In addition, coverage will be denied if the insurer determines damage was caused by negligence, such as ignoring an existing problem with the roof that leads to water entry.
Resubmit Your Claim
Carefully read the information provided by the insurance company along with the rejection of your claim. Sometimes, claims are denied because they don’t provide sufficiently detailed information. Follow the instructions to make an appeal and include additional information about the damage as requested, including photos, receipts and repair estimates. You can also request that the adjuster employed by the insurance company review his or her initial estimate.
Hire an Independent Adjuster
If your claim is denied a second time or the insurance company stands by the original estimate, you may want to engage the services of a public adjuster in Miami. Although you will have to pay for an independent estimate, the information provided will give you leverage when it comes to disputing the estimate provided by your insurance company.
Seek Legal Advice
When the insurance company refuses to budge on the coverage amount even with the input of an independent adjuster, you may need to hire an attorney to review your claim. If your settlement amount is more than $1,000 less than the cost of your water damage repairs, legal counsel could be a worthwhile investment.
Report Poor Business Practices
If you feel you have been unfairly treated by your insurance company, you can file a complaint with the insurance department in your state. A representative will gather details about your situation and determine whether you have a justified complaint. He or she may help you negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement.
It can be frustrating when you feel you aren’t getting the compensation you deserve from your insurance company. Hiring a professional adjuster and/or an attorney can help you receive your entitled water damage coverage.