August 28th, 2012

So Hurricane Isaac has damaged your property – now what?

By Mark A. Boyle

Many of you reading this blog will have already sustained damage as a result of Hurricane Isaac. Some of you, those in the Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama area, are still awaiting its effects.

The question often arises, what do you do if your property has been damaged by a hurricane? Almost every homeowner’s insurance policy, property insurance policy, and flood insurance policy issued in America contains standard conditions requiring several things of the insured following the loss.

First, the insured is required to give timely notice to all insurers who are potentially at risk from the loss. This would include not only your homeowner’s or property insurer, but your flood insurer also.

Second, most policies require you to take appropriate temporary measures to avoid further damage.

In addition to these basic steps, we recommend the following additional activities:

 

Insurance

  • Review your insurance policy to make sure you are adequately protected. Make sure that your policy is up to date.
  • Does your policy include coverage for additional living expenses if you home becomes uninhabitable?
  • Do you have enough coverage for your valuables?
  • Do you have flood insurance?

Protect Yourself and Your Property-Being Prepared May Reduce Your Risk and Damage/Loss

  • Safeguard your property by removing damaged or loose branches from the trees so it does not become an extra wind hazard. This will help keep them from blowing around during a storm.
  • Use a garage or carport to park your car in. If you do not have a garage or carport, try to park your car on higher ground in case of flooding.
  • Bring all lawn furniture, outdoor decorations, trash cans, hanging plants and anything else that could be picked up by the wind inside. Anchor objects that cannot be brought inside.

Take Inventory For Your Claim

  • Document your damage. Take as many photographs as you can and create an inventory of your losses.  Be detailed by having reciepts and serial numbers. A video camera may also be used.
  • Try to maintain or retrieve as much damaged property as you can so that the insurance company can review it.

     Contact your insurance company to start the claims process.  If your property have significant damage you may want to consider hiring a public insurance adjuster.

HOW OUR TEAM CAN ASSIST YOU

Boyle, Gentile, Leonard & Crockett, P.A. focuses its practice on insurance policy disputes. Virtually any injury, financial or physical, covered by an insurance policy, can generate an insurance dispute. Our firm can assist individual and business policyholders in three main areas: (1) claim presentation, (2) litigation, and (3) appeals.

 

Contact our Florida policyholder insurance coverage dispute attorneys at 239-337-1303 if you are having issues with your insurance company or want to know about your legal rights.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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