Collecting An Insurance Payout after Storm Damage
Storms cause serious damage to your commercial property or home. The more forceful the storm, the more devastating the damage. Texas weather is unpredictable and can bring heavy rain and strong wind, along with large hail. This type of weather can completely destroy your roof and other parts of your home. When the skies clear, the task of clean up and repair begins. Repairs start with contacting your insurance company to cover the costs of repair. But many insurance companies are hesitant to pay out after storm damage, and it becomes necessary to have an attorney make a demand. Ft. Worth, TX, attorney Preston Dugas can help you recover from storm damage.
Damage Caused by Hail
Hail refers to pellets of frozen rain that can fall at high velocities, resulting in significant damage to many kinds of property. Texas sees more significant hail storms than most other states in the country. The types of damage hail causes include:
- Roof damage: Holes and leaks in your roof are common after a major hail storm.
- Window damage: Cracked and broken window panes can easily occur during a hail storm, especially when high winds accompany hail.
- Siding and gutters: When hail hits siding or guttering, they can become cracked.
- Vehicles: Windows on your car can become destroyed when hit with large hail, and the hood and body of your car also takes a beating.
Replacement or repair of these items is costly. The purpose of having an insurance policy in place is to avoid these costs coming from out of your pocket. It is critical to make a claim right away after a major hail storm event. If your insurance company refuses payment, you need to enlist the help of a qualified attorney.
Storms cause serious damage, especially storms with hail and wind. A storm damage attorney can pursue payment from your insurance company to repair your house.
Damage Caused by Wind
High winds can rip trees from their roots, tear shingles off your roof, and cause other damage. Texas is a state with a high risk of tornadic activity, and with a tornado comes high winds. Some of the types of damage caused by wind include:
- Missing shingles from a roof
- Overturned and smashed cars
- Trees coming through windows
- Downed electric lines
After any storm, be sure to assess the damage and take photos. Then, call your insurance company to report the damage and make a claim. Document your claim and keep copies of all papers you turn over to your insurance company so you have evidence of the damage done if your claim is denied. For claim denials, Preston Dugas can help collect what you are owed.
When preparing to file a claim or fight a denial of a claim, here are some helpful tips:
- File a claim as soon as possible. Include photos and a narrative of the event so your insurance company has a complete file.
- Keep copies of everything you send your insurance company, and make a record of the name of every adjuster you speak with and the date.
- Get an independent inspection of damage, aside from the one your insurance company will have done. You are entitled to present a second opinion to show the damage is more severe than your insurance company believes. This helps ensure you receive enough money to properly repair your property.
- Cover any open roof holes with tarp and board up broken windows. You have a duty to prevent further damage from being done and failing to do so may cause your insurance company to place the blame on you.
- Make a list of what needs to be fixed or replaced.
- Contact an attorney for help.
We have taken on insurance companies before, and will continue to do so for your benefit. If your claim has been denied, it is not the end of the road. We will challenge the denial or seek a higher amount than what has been offered so your property is protected.
Dealing with Claims Adjusters
In most cases of storm damage, the insurance company will send a claims adjuster to asset the damage. These individuals are hired by your provider to protect the insurance company’s best interests. In many cases, it is up to you to prove the extent of your losses with your own documentation. Our team can help you prepare this documentation to present to the adjuster. We can also advocate on your behalf to ensure that the insurance company does not take advantage of you. Storm damage claims are complex, and having an attorney can be invaluable when dealing with companies who want to avoid paying what you are owed.
Fighting Insurance Bad Faith
Even if you have faithfully paid for your insurance coverage for years, the insurance company may still make it incredibly difficult to collect the compensation you deserve. Your provider may:
- Say your claim is not covered without providing valid reasons
- Delay paying valid claims
- Ask for excessive amounts of paperwork to stall your payout
- Fail to promptly investigate your claim
- Argue that pre-existing conditions are the cause of your storm damage
- Present unfairly low offers
At Preston Dugas Law Firm, we are familiar with the many tactics an insurance company may use to avoid paying what they owe to their clients. Mr. Dugas is an aggressive and dedicated attorney who can fight for the compensation you need and deserve.
Do Not Settle For Less
In many cases, insurance companies count on their clients accepting low-ball offers for their property damage due to fear or lack of understanding. At Preston Dugas Law Firm, we believe you should never settle for less than you deserve after a storm damages your home. Contact our firm online or call (817) 945-3061 to speak to a member of our team. If we take your case, we will work on a contingency basis, meaning you pay nothing until you collect.
If your insurance company denies or underpays your claim for storm damage, or if you decide to pursue government assistance, a lawyer can help expedite the process and get you back on your feet as soon as possible. This is especially important for commercial property owners, whose income depends on having a viable property.