Hurricane Ida: Tips for Handling Your Claim
If your house was damaged by Hurricane Ida, the tips below will help you better handle your claim.
- Act Quickly – If your home or business suffered damages due to Hurricane Ida, make your claim ASAP. Understand that insurance companies will be flooded by a deluge of phone calls and emails and only have so many adjusters and inspectors to deploy. The sooner you make your claim, the better chance of receiving timely and efficient adjustment.
- Keep Track of Your Claim – In our experience, the more you follow up with your adjuster, the sooner they will act to resolve your claim. Make sure to get your adjuster’s contact information including their email address and memorialize all conversations and interactions in writing. This will help if your insurance company attempts to deny your claims.
- Familiarize yourself with your Policy – An insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurance company. In exchange for your premium payment, the insurance company promises to pay for damage to your property which arise from a covered cause of loss. Unfortunately, most insurance policy language is drafted ambiguously and tailored to minimize the insurance company’s exposure. If your adjuster denies any portion of your damages, demand a written detailed coverage opinion explaining their denial.
- Be Prepared for a Heightened Deductible – Most homeowners and business insurance policies have separate hurricane deductibles that are substantially larger than the normal deductible. Typically, a hurricane deductible is between 2% – 5% of the total amount of coverage.
- Take Pictures – After the storm has passed, photograph and video every item of damaged structural and personal property. This evidence can be very important in substantiating the extent of your loss.
- Obtain Your Own Estimates – Your insurance adjuster will perform its own calculation of the damage to your home using estimating software like Exactimate. Chances are the insurance adjusters are not licensed contractors and are not qualified to calculate damages or scope of property damage. The best valuation of your damage is a repair estimate of a Louisiana licensed contractor that is experienced in storm damage claims.
- Make a Detailed List of Your Damaged Personal Property – Your homeowners’ insurance includes coverage for damage to the structure of your home AND for damage to your personal property located inside the home. Utilize your photos and memory to create a list of all of your personal property. Your adjuster will use estimating software to factor in depreciation and give you an amount corresponding to your damaged property.
- Save Receipts For Additional Living Expenses – Another area of coverage is Additional Living Expenses. If you have to rent another residence while your property is repaired, your insurance may offer coverage. It is imperative to get all lease documents in writing and to save your receipts for things such as groceries, cable, internet, and utilities to submit to your insurer.
If you need help with your insurance claim or have any questions regarding the claims process, the attorneys at Favret Carriere Cronvich are here and ready to help you and your family through this trying time. Please call or text us at 504-372-6175 to set up a free consultation.
We look forward to the opportunity to help our state recover in any way that we can.