Advocating Your Right to Coverage
We know that New Orleans and other areas of Louisiana are no exceptions to the frequent, turbulent weather that strikes the Gulf of Mexico. While there is little we can do to shield ourselves from these storms, we should be able to protect our belongings with property damage and storm damage insurance claims.
In exchange for your premiums, your insurance providers are supposed to cover your most valued property in New Orleans against property damage. When your providers resort to bad faith tactics to leave you high and dry, our New Orleans property damage lawyers are here to help you handle your storm damage insurance claims.
Nature is very unpredictable. Unfortunately, as much as we might want to be able to control the weather, it’s just not possible. Severe weather can result in some catastrophic damages to your personal property.
We understand just how frustrating and emotionally draining it can be when you are trying to deal with the outcome of a disastrous storm. What can be even worse than dealing with the damages from the storm is trying to deal with your insurance company when you file a claim. Regardless of how reputable your insurance company might be, they are still more interested in keeping their profit margins high.
You Deserve Coverage for Storm Damages
Insurance companies are known for attempting to exploit loopholes within your policy to keep as much money to themselves as possible. Ultimately, they do not care about what property damages you incurred or how much insurance money might benefit you and your family.
This is where it is essential to understand all the nuances of your insurance policy. Even with a knowledgeable understanding of your plan, you can still run into issues when you are trying to settle your claim.
If you have been the victim of storm damage to your property, you might still find that you need the assistance of a qualified attorney to get the payout that you need and deserve. At Scott, Vicknair, Hair, and Checki, we have years of experience handling storm damage claims. Our experience will directly benefit your needs. We can help you get the settlement that you deserve, not just what the insurance company wants to pay.
Common Damages Covered by Insurance Providers
Every insurance policy has the capability to be unique, and one should never assume that they are covered for an event that has not been explicitly stated as covered. Knowing what your provider will pay out for is chief among the legal obligations of both parties entering this contract.
Every homeowner understands the value of a solid policy that protects against property damage. However, most homeowners don’t realize precisely what is covered under the policy and what is not.
Regardless of how extensive you believe your policy to be, there are more than likely some significant holes in your coverage. Depending on the type of storm, and the damage incurred as a result of that particular storm, you might be fully covered, or your property might be exposed. Certain types of storms might require a completely independent policy for your property to be covered from damages. Many insurance policies take into consideration common weather events in your area:
Thunderstorms are relatively common in many places throughout the country. When you are dealing with storms, your property is at risk for lightning damage. There are upwards of 100 lightning strikes per second all over the earth, and those strikes can cause some significant damage to property.
Much of the damage from lightning strikes is a result of power surges that damage electronic devices inside and outside the home. Most policies will cover damage from power surges, but there are times where your regular policy does not offer enough coverage. The electronic damage from power surges can be tricky. It isn’t always apparent – sometimes you have to actually look for this damage. It makes sense to have an attorney that has experience with this.
Hurricanes and tornadoes produce a significant amount of high winds. These winds can cause significant damage to your property and even destroy homes. These strong winds can also uproot trees, which can fall on your home, vehicles, and other property items. Homeowners also don’t realize how much upward pressure is created by a tornado. This places amazing stress on a roof and can cause it to fail down the road.
The typical homeowner’s policy will cover substantial wind damage, but insurance companies are notorious for finding other factors involved in the losses. What might seem obvious to even a casual observer, can become a nightmare for policyholders whose insurance company is trying to exploit loopholes in their policy coverage.
Flooding is one of those storm damage areas that are typically not covered by a regular insurance policy. Most flood damage falls under the watch of FEMA and requires a separate policy to receive any compensation for flood damage.
Some significant regulations and deadlines must be met when trying to file a flood claim. You have 60 days from the incident to get your flood claim filed. This might seem like a decent window of time, but that time can quickly pass as you deal with the aftermath of the loss incurred from a flood.
Any homeowner who lives in an area that is prone to hurricanes or other storms should invest in a quality flood policy for their property. When dealing with a flood claim, an excellent team of attorneys can help you navigate the often-complicated process of filing your claim with the federal government.
After a Hurricane
Even the most diligent of property owners can only prepare so much for a severe storm. Hurricanes can cause significant amounts of damage, regardless of the precautions a property owner takes.
Severe storms can and will cause damage to property, and that is where it is crucial to understand the nuances of your policy. Our firm can help you take the following measures to ensure that your claim is handled expertly and with efficiency. Here are a few tips to help you file a comprehensive claim:
- Make sure to document all damage to your property. In this case, you can’t be thorough enough. Take pictures of specific damaged areas as well as pictures of the entire property. Don’t forget to include images and video of the roof, sides, and other buildings that might be on the property. Take a variety of wide shots that show the extent of the damages. Inside, take pictures and video of every room. After you have all the photos of the property and the rooms, then focus on images of individual items that have been damaged as well. Again, you can’t take too many pictures here. The more evidence that you have on your side, the better.
- Along with the photos, you need to have an itemized inventory of every property item, inside and out, that was damaged.
- Any property outside that was damaged needs to be covered to prevent further damages. Most insurance companies will look for any reason to not pay you the full amount, and they are continually looking for ways to show your property wasn’t damaged as a result of the storm.
- File your claim quickly. Do not wait. Gather your evidence and get your claim filed promptly. You want the insurance company to start their investigation process as soon as possible. It is not a bad idea to file your claim with an attorney.
Overcoming Disaster: What you need to know after a fire, flood, hurricane, tornado, or other disaster
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In addition to our deserved reputation as compassionate and driven attorneys, we have also been recognized by our peers for our success. As proud members of Super Lawyers, the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and with a 10.0 rating on Avvo, we are pleased that we have been able to triumphantly carry out our only mission: protecting our clients from bad faith insurance practices.