Hurricane Irma wreaked havoc across much of South Florida last month, leaving many residents with the monumental task of rebuilding their lives in the wake of the storm. Some Floridians were lucky and were able to avoid the storm for the most part, making their transition to post-hurricane life smooth. However, for others, fallen trees, damaged roofs and windows, and extreme water damage caused significant property damage, requiring tens of thousands of dollars to rebuild, if not more.
For most affected homeowners, their South Florida property insurance policy should cover much of the damage they sustained in the storm. Indeed, according to a recent news report, there have been approximately 562,000 insurance claims filed related to Hurricane Irma damage. Added up, these claims represent about a $3.6 billion loss, and that figure is expected to increase with time. Most of the claims came from Miami-Dade, Orange, Broward, and Lee Counties.
Given the number of claims filed in South Florida last month, one may expect that a homeowner will face significant delays when waiting for their claim to be approved. In addition, if the insurance company does not agree with the homeowner’s claim amount, it may offer a reduced figure in hopes of a quick settlement. A desperate homeowner in need of financial assistance to rebuild their life may be tempted by such an offer; however, an insurance company’s initial offer is rarely non-negotiable.
Insurance companies are for-profit corporations, the sole purpose of which is to make money. Insurance adjusters are compensated by insurance companies to settle claims for the lowest dollar figure possible. Thus, if an adjuster believes that a desperate homeowner will accept a reduced claim amount, the adjuster may hold off on making a full-claim offer. However, insurance companies are bound by contract to approve claims based on merit, rather than on these external circumstances. When an insurance company is acting outside the ethical bounds of the industry, a personal injury lawyer may be able to assist a homeowner in obtaining a fair amount for their claim.
Do You Need an Attorney Who Will Fight for You?
At Cecere Santana, we have decades of experience dealing with difficult insurance companies. Both founding partners, Michael Cecere and Erik Santana, were previously claims adjusters for a large national insurance company, and they have experience handling property insurance claims on the other side. We know how insurance companies think, what leads them to approve or deny claims, and what can convince them to settle a claim fairly and quickly. We put our knowledge to use for our clients, and we are not afraid to back our knowledge up with our significant courtroom experience if an insurance company is not willing to make a fair claim settlement offer. To learn more about South Florida Hurricane Irma property damage claims, and to speak with a dedicated property insurance attorney, call 800-753-5529 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney.
More Blog Posts:
Cecere Santana can Help with Hurricane Irma Claims, Cecere Santana Injury Lawyers Blog, published September 5, 2017.
South Florida Hit-and-Run Accidents, Cecere Santana Injury Lawyers Blog, published September 3, 2017.