While a home fire may seem like a straightforward situation for the insurance company to handle, insurers don’t view them in the same way. Fire claims can take unexpected twists and turns that homeowners don’t expect or anticipate.
The Search for Responsibility
A fire is a highly complex matter for insurers. It’s the most common type of claim homeowners make. Insurers will automatically begin searching for who is ultimately liable for the damage. An extensive amount of paperwork and documentation may be required. The claim may be denied or reimbursement reduced, depending on who the insurer deems is liable.
Accidental or Deliberate
Accidental fires occur all the time. These are conflagrations that don’t involve any deliberate human involvement. Homeowner polices don’t cover deliberate damage, such as arson, and policy holders may not be reimbursed. However, the damage may be covered as an act of vandalism Arson is a felony and if the culprit is found, they could be forced to pay restitution if the homeowner prosecutes.
Public Adjusters on the Job
If a claim is denied or underpaid, a homeowner can turn to a public adjuster for help. The highly trained and experienced experts are cognizant of the many nuances, strategies, and tactics of the insurance industry. They’ll begin by examining a client’s insurance policy for terms, policy limits, and exclusions. It’s important to understand that a public adjuster does not work for the insurance company in any capacity.
When homeowners hire a public adjuster, he or she is authorized to perform a variety of tasks. They can file paperwork and negotiate with the insurer on behalf of the homeowner, based on the terms of the policy, for coverage or a larger reimbursement.
While there’s never a guarantee that a public adjuster will be successful, it’s an excellent option should a claim be denied or compensation reduced. Working with a public adjuster means homeowners don’t have to fill out a mountain of confusing forms. It also eliminates a significant amount of stress on homeowners who are already dealing with the trauma and aftermath of a fire.