On top of restoring your life after a storm or catastrophic event, the insurance claims process can be stressful, time consuming and often feel like a full-time job. The last thing a home or business owner wants to hear is that their property damage insurance claim has been denied.
The good news is that policyholders can take steps during the claims process to help ensure claims are not denied for one of these common reasons.
1.Waiting Too Long To File
If you’ve suffered property damage due to a storm or catastrophic event, filing a claim with your insurance company quickly is important! The time limit for filing a claim can vary based on the state and type of policy that you have, but one thing is for certain: the sooner you file the better. Waiting months or years after the damage occurred could allow your claim to be denied outright.
Click here to get tips on what to do before and after you file a claim for storm damage.
2. Burden of Proof
Once a property damage claim is filed, the insurance company will likely investigate the damages. The burden of proof is often on the policyholder. In some cases, insurance companies may request the policyholder to provide documentation like photographs, receipts, and other information to “prove” that the date of loss and type of damage is covered.
Accommodating an insurance companies request for information can be stressful for policyholders. Rebuilding and restoring your life after a storm is no easy task but not providing the requested information to the insurance company could result in your claim being denied.
One of the easiest ways to make sure your claim isn’t denied is to properly document damages after a loss. Click here to get tips on what to document immediately after a storm.
3. Damage Is Not Covered Under Policy
Your insurance policy outlines what is covered and what isn’t, and many policyholders may be shocked to find out that they are not covered for all types of damages. In some cases, this is fairly straight forward. For example, if your homeowner’s insurance policy does not cover earthquake damage, claims filed for earthquake damage will be denied.
However, in some cases the difference between a valid claim being approved or denied depends on how your insurance company interprets the policy language. For many policyholders this puts them at a direct disadvantage when communicating about their claim.
If you feel your claim has been wrongfully denied or if coverage is not being fully applied, consider seeking help from a skilled Property Damage Insurance Claim Attorney who can correctly interpret policy coverages. Click here to learn how we can help.
4. Non-Payment of Premiums
If you have not paid your premium or paid too late, your claim could be denied. However, there are certain notice requirements the insurance company must follow it is cancels your policy for non-payment of premium.
Tips to Help You Avoid Denial of Your Claim
- Know your policy. It is important to know that you have the appropriate insurance coverage for your individual needs. Review your coverage amounts at least once per year.
- Act fast. After a storm or other damage related event, start taking photographs, obtaining evidence and documenting your losses. Then immediately notify your insurance company or agent that you have damage.
- Take steps to mitigate your damages. You could be held liable for some of your losses if the investigation determines that you failed to protect your property.
- Seek professional help. If the insurance company is not cooperating or treating you unfairly, it may be time to get an experienced Property Damage Insurance Claim Attorney by your side.
Get Legal Help Now
If you’ve received notice that your claim has been denied, you still have options. It is important to seek advice from a legal professional who can review your policy and help you navigate this process. Murray + Murray is here to help. Our team of legal experts will make sure your claim is fairly and accurately paid. Contact us online or by calling 813-940-1500 for a free case review.