My Insurance Company Will Not Pay For My Property Damage. How Can A Lawyer Help Me Get Paid?

Editor’s Note: When insurance companies will not pay for property damage, Haute Lawyer partners The Property People come to the rescue.

The Property People july 2020 - shutterstock_700077451Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Insurance companies routinely deny and underpay legitimate covered claims for property damage in breach of their policy obligations. The damage can result from hurricanes, roof leaks, plumbing breaks, pipe leaks, wind, hail, and more. Most homeowners and commercial property owners accept a coverage determination for what it is and pay for the damage out-of-pocket, assuming the cause is lost. Not so! A property damage lawyer can examine your insurance policy, assess your property damage, discuss the circumstances and events that gave rise to your property damage, and help you pursue the compensation you deserve to make the repairs you need. Best of all, our firm can accomplish this at NO COST to our clients, since Florida law obligates insurance carriers to pay for a policyholder’s legal expenses upon the resolution of litigation. This means that our firm takes NOTHING from your settlement. We even pay for all of your litigation costs (filing fees, court reporters, expert witnesses). And no matter the circumstances, even in the event of a dismissed case, we will never come after a client for those expenses.

Our lawyers at the Property People are former defense attorneys who used to represent the very same insurance companies they now sue. They have spent years litigating insurance disputes over property damage to homes, condominiums, and commercial units. They have analyzed structural engineer reports, discontinued roof tiles, mold remediation records, and every type of floor and baseboard to determine whether a continuous replacement is warranted. Today, as plaintiff’s attorneys, they stand behind policyholders with a comprehensive understanding of the issues they face when insurance companies improperly deny, underpay, or even withdraw coverage.

Although you may submit your claim to the insurance company before or after retaining an attorney (and you should report a claim as soon as you see damage), only a licensed attorney can file a lawsuit against the insurance company if the insurance company refuses to pay what you are owed. Unlike a public adjuster or loss consultant, only a licensed attorney can initiate a lawsuit and force the insurance company to justify their underpayment or denial of a claim in court if your insurance company refuses to pay what you are justly owed. You will need an attorney to pursue a legal claim against the insurance company, as only a licensed attorney can depose the insurance company’s corporate representative, send discovery requests to the insurance company to understand the basis for the coverage determination. Once a lawsuit is filed, only a licensed attorney can seek relief from the court for efforts an insurance company might make to delay or deny rightful payment.

To know whether your insurance company should cover your claim, or pay for repairs to be made to your property damage, we will need to reference your insurance policy. Policies will often exclude claims for damage that is long-term in nature, results from neglect or poor maintenance, and is reported late. Some policies may not cover flood damage or mold, but they may contain coverage for hurricane or storm damage that results in flooding or mold. Insurance companies may misinterpret policy language to avoid paying a claim, fail to thoroughly investigate a loss, demand that you submit a sworn proof of loss, or use unreasonable delays to avoid resolving a claim. 

It is not always simple to learn exactly what is covered and what is excluded by your insurance policy. At times, policy language can be ambiguous and confusing. The Property People are advocates for homeowners and commercial property owners – we are thorough in our analysis of available coverage and committed to transparency, fairness, and prompt communication. We will do everything in our power to make sure our clients are fully and fairly paid by their insurance companies.

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