Hurricane Damage and Insurance Claim Lawyers Serving Florida
People who have lived through a Florida hurricane know that it is one of the most devastating experiences a family can undergo. For this reason, many Floridians take preventative measures by purchasing insurance to cover the expense of repairs and significant damage in the event of a storm.
Sadly, the insurance company may use insurance adjusters to deny compensation for the damages incurred. Because insurers are profit-making organizations, they can take drastic measures to avoid paying claims or offering a fair amount for the damage and losses. Even diligent premium payers may be left in problematic financial situations after a hurricane if their insurer refuses to pay a claim because of a minor technicality or bad faith.
If a hurricane damages your home, dealing with an insurance claim can be challenging. To avoid having their insurer take advantage of them at this trying time, Floridians with insurance claims connected to hurricanes should consult with a skilled Florida hurricane insurance claim lawyer.
Call us at (561) 800-8000 for legal advice on how to seek compensation for a claim.
Keep reading to learn crucial insights about hurricane damage and insurance claims in Florida.How do Hurricane and Homeowner Insurance Policies Work?
It is not always easy to determine what is and is not covered by an insurance policy. It is best to review your insurance policy document before filing a claim to see if it provides adequate protection. Our seasoned attorneys can help you understand your policy's coverage for your property when filing a claim for a hurricane.
Homeowners insurance usually covers wind damage from a hurricane and offers coverage against lightning and hail. Most policies require separate deductibles to cover home damage, often expressed as a percentage of the home's total value.
Although standard homeowner's insurance may not cover damage from flash flooding and storm surges, we can help you file a claim under your flood insurance policy if you have one.
A hurricane damage claims attorney or tropical storm damage attorney in Florida can assist you in understanding the complex claims procedure and help you fight for the compensation you may be owed if the insurer:
- Denies your claim
- Argues that wind and hurricane damage is excluded from your policy
- Delays processing claims or paying for the damage
- Undervalues your damages
A Florida hurricane can cause different types of damage. If your home has been damaged, you should inspect it thoroughly for any storm-related damage before filing a claim.
Hurricanes in Florida can cause the following types of damage:
Water damage: Storm surges can cause flooding or entire erosion of the land nearby, leading to a wide range of impacts.
Damage from flooding: Hurricanes not only cause damage from storm surges but also flooding due to prolonged and intense rainfall.
Wind damage: While homeowners are rarely at risk from everyday breezes, hurricane winds can cause significant disruptions, including the removal of trees, transportation of vehicles, and even the removal of your home's roof or siding.
Hurricane storm damage: Tornadoes are another type of severe weather that can be triggered by a hurricane's high winds and other weather conditions.
Our law firm has experience helping policyholders with many different types of hurricane damage claims for commercial and residential property, including:
- Minor and significant roof damage
- Floor damage
- Damage to foundations
- Collapsed walls
- Interior property damage
- Deck damage
- Landscaping damage
It's standard practice for policyholders to submit follow-up claims after initially filing one to address problems discovered during the investigation.What to do After Hurricane Damage
Cleaning up and dealing with property damage can be a significant source of anxiety and worry in the wake of a hurricane. Most home and commercial building owners may wonder what to do after a storm has wreaked havoc on their property.
Here are the steps you should take after a hurricane:
- If you can't stay at your current home, you should look for somewhere else to stay temporarily. You may need to check into a hotel briefly while contractors repair your home.
- Take safety measures such as turning off all utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed by the authorities.
- Take precautions to safeguard your property and document all measures taken. You must demonstrate that you took reasonable steps to protect your property when a storm struck.
- Take videos and photos of everything that was destroyed or damaged due to the weather. Document the damage while it is still raining or right after the storm ends to prove that the hurricane caused it.
- Retain all invoices or receipts for repairs and replacements. Also, keep all the receipts for supplies purchases and temporary housing expenses.
- File a claim as soon as possible. If a hurricane damages your home or business, don't delay contacting your insurance carrier to file a claim. Your proof of loss should be submitted promptly.
- Call a Florida Hurricane damage and insurance claim lawyer to guide you through the insurance claims process.
Our passionate team of attorneys is available 24/7 on call at (561) 800-8000.Understanding Hurricane Categories
Understanding the hurricane categories is essential to keep yourself, your loved ones, and your possessions safe during such storms. According to the National Hurricane Center and Central Pacific Hurricane Center, below are the five categories of hurricanes:
- Category 1: Hurricanes with sustained winds of 74 to 95 miles per hour are classified as category 1. This category includes hurricanes that make landfall but do little to no damage.
- Category 2: Hurricanes in this category have wind speeds between 96 and 110 mph. However, they are not strong enough to make landfall. There are no reported victims of these hurricanes, despite the widespread devastation they can cause.
- Category 3: Once a hurricane reaches Category 3, it leaves the Gulf of Mexico and transitions into a post-tropical storm. Even if the winds calm down, there will still be significant damage. Category 3 hurricanes often cause tornadoes, are extremely dangerous, and can cause considerable damage to people and property.
- Category 4: These hurricanes are characterized by extremely high winds of over 125 miles per hour. They often remain over land for an extended period of about 48 hours or more. The potential consequences of category 4 hurricanes include widespread destruction, deaths, and power disruptions that last for days or weeks.
- Category 5: Category 5 hurricanes have sustained winds of over 157 miles per hour. These hurricanes are most likely to cause catastrophic property damage.
If a category 3 hurricane causes damage to your home, your insurance should help pay for the repairs. Most homeowners' insurance policies offered in Florida are subject to the hurricane or wind deductible. Consult our Florida hurricane damage lawyers today for a complimentary legal consultation (by appointment only).Difference Between Hurricane Insurance and Flood Insurance
The level of damage caused by a hurricane may exceed the limits of your homeowner's insurance policy. For example, a conventional homeowner's policy will not pay for water damage unless you purchase additional coverage, such as flood insurance.
Consequently, your hurricane insurance claim will not likely cover water damage or flooding, and insurance companies are notorious for blaming all damage on a flood loss. Our highly qualified legal professionals can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to increase your chances of a positive outcome.Insurance Companies Are Focused on Increasing Profits
Even if the damage does fit inside the coverage of the policy, homeowners who suffer significant property damage due to wind, debris, or electrical issues may have trouble acquiring the coverage they need. However, we are prepared to take legal action if your insurance company wrongfully denies or underpays your claim.Potential Damages You May Recover
Those who have suffered losses because of a hurricane should seek financial compensation for their damages. State laws allow you to file a claim for economic damages against your homeowner's insurance company or a lawsuit against your property owner if you rent.
The various types of compensation you might be eligible to receive in a Florida hurricane damage claim include:
- Medical costs
- Damage to or destruction of property
- Lost wages
- Loss of personal property, such as a car
You may also be eligible to seek monetary compensation for further damages, such as:
- Loss of income opportunities
- Loss of business sales and contracts
- Mental distress
- Pain and suffering
It is highly advised to hire the counsel of a Florida hurricane damage home insurance attorney if you have experienced financial challenges from a severe storm. A seasoned attorney will handle all legal correspondences to help preserve your legal rights.The Benefits of Hiring a Florida Hurricane Lawyer
The aftermath of a catastrophe might leave victims wondering what steps to take next. Consulting with an attorney can help you understand your rights and options. A Florida hurricane damage attorney will fight for your rights as a victim and help you seek recovery to rebuild your life after a storm.
Our dedicated hurricane damage attorneys will:
- Offer a free initial consultation to help you know your legal options
- Provide counsel on potential legal avenues and the best way to pursue them
- Explain the claims process with your insurance provider
- Handle insurance litigation and correspondence
- Help you seek compensation for flooding and windstorm damage
- Aid with personal injury claims if a victim was hurt or died because of construction negligence after a hurricane
You have up to three years from the date of a hurricane to file a claim with your property insurance company in Florida, per local state laws. Although this appears to be a lengthy time frame, many potential circumstances could hold up the time limit. This is why you should not delay filing a claim if a hurricane has caused damage to your home or business premises.
You still have time to file an insurance claim and pursue reimbursement if you find yourself in a disagreement. While it's crucial to have insurance in case of a natural disaster such as flooding and hurricanes, policyholders should be aware that their claims could be denied in bad faith.
A competent Florida hurricane insurance claims attorney is an indispensable ally in these kinds of cases. Learn more today about hurricane insurance through a free initial consultation.Do You Need Help Filing a Hurricane Insurance Claim?
Insurance claims are widespread in Florida because of the frequency of tropical storms causing damage. However, insurance adjusters are cautious while examining each claim to safeguard the company's resources due to the prevalence of these claims. This implies that they may investigate your claim from any angle possible.
There are various resources available if your hurricane insurance claim was wrongfully declined. Damages from natural catastrophes may be compensated with the help of an attorney, just as for automobile accidents.
To seek the settlement offer you need for the damage caused by the high winds, flooding, and other hurricane consequences, you may have to begin a lawsuit against the insurance carrier.The Consequences of Delaying a Hurricane Insurance Claim
Most insurance policies have a deadline of one year after a natural disaster, but the Insurance Information Institute states that you have three years to file a claim for damages after a storm in Florida.
Keep in mind that you may not be able to make a claim if your losses exceed the limits of your insurance policy. For this reason, you should make your hurricane insurance claim as soon as possible after the storm has passed and you've had a chance to assess the damage and collect your receipts.
Insurance adjusters will have more time to claim that the policy doesn't cover hurricane damage if you wait too long to file a claim.Factors that can Affect Hurricane Insurance Payout
A storm surge can occur anywhere in Florida, including Fort Myers, Orlando, Port Charlotte, Sarasota, and other coastal cities. The widespread vulnerability to storm destruction means that claims for hurricane-related property damage are common in the Sunshine State.
Factors that could affect insurance compensation include:
- Insurance limits: A homeowner's insurance policy in Florida may cover storm damage, but the policy's limits may not be high enough to pay for everything that's been damaged.
- Lack of adequate coverage: If your insurance policy doesn't provide adequate coverage, it may not cover all the damage to your property. If your home is damaged by water or wind, your insurance policy may not cover it.
- Failure to document the damage: One of the most common arguments insurance adjusters give for refusing claims filed by property and business owners is a lack of paperwork or evidence for losses sustained in the aftermath of a natural disaster.
- Insurers are acting in bad faith: You may not be able to prove that your insurer is behaving in bad faith by denying your claim without good cause, but a skilled hurricane damage attorney in Florida can help you find out why.
Contact a hurricane insurance claims attorney to review your claim and guide you through the appeals process if the insurance company denied your claim following a hurricane in Florida.Call Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers to Protect Your Legal Rights
You may be eligible to seek compensation if a hurricane damages your property in Florida. Your options for filing a claim depend on the type of damages and whether you have insurance. Florida laws allow you to file a lawsuit against your insurance company or the government. However, time limits apply depending on the claim type.
Consultation with a skilled storm property damage attorney is recommended since the statute of limitations may differ, and additional possibilities that you are unaware of may exist. Our legal team is available to assist with claims across the state in the aftermath of a hurricane (by appointment only).
If you live in Florida and have suffered hurricane damage, Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers can help you seek the compensation you deserve. We remain in constant contact with our clients so that they receive the legal representation they need.
Contact Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers to set up a free initial consultation and assess your case with a hurricane claim attorney. Our law firm offers free, no-obligation consultations to property owners when they have trouble with their hurricane insurance claims.
Call us at (561) 800-8000 or send us a message on our website to speak with a Florida personal injury lawyer from our firm and learn more about your rights and alternatives.