Common Questions About Florida Homeowners' Insurance Claims
Our Jacksonville insurance lawyers are often asked many questions about homeowners’ insurance. Many of those questions are addressed below:
Homeowners’ insurance policies are considered contracts under Florida law. Accordingly, Florida contract law applies to these claims.
Your homeowners’ insurance carrier should pay for repairs of any damage that is covered under your policy. It is important to note that you are supposed to have your home restored. Many insurers try to simply put a “band-aid” on the damage by making simple repairs, but as a homeowner, your policy entitles you to a restoration of your home to its pre-loss condition.
In general, under Florida building code, if a roof is more than 25% damaged, a full roof replacement is required and should be covered by your insurance policy. Additionally, if repairs will result in a mis-matched roof where the repaired area is visible or is a different color than the older area of your roof, a full roof replacement should be covered. Roofing issues represent on the most common types of claim disputes seen by our Jacksonville insurance lawyers.
Insurers are allowed to assess depreciation when they adjust your homeowners’ claim. Depreciation is usually calculated by figuring out replacement value, along with life expectancy. Using these figures, the insurer will calculate an amount they label as depreciation. Under Florida law, insurers are allowed to withhold the depreciation amount until after you complete your repairs. Once you finish your repairs, you provide documentation to your insurer, and it will issue you a check for the depreciation amount.
You may need a property damage attorney for many reasons. If your insurer denies a claim you believe they should have paid, you should call one of our attorneys. Additionally, if the insurance company underpays your claim, you may have a case. Sometimes insurers ignore your claim altogether, or they delay responding to you for unreasonable amounts of time. If you are encountering any of these problems, you probably need a lawyer.
Most Florida homeowners’ insurance policies have a separate deductible for hurricanes that is a percentage of your total coverage. This can result in astronomical deductibles that shock homeowners after a named storm passes through. However, these high deductibles can often be avoided by a simple phone call to your insurer – call your insurer today and inquire about the price to lower your hurricane deductible to a more manageable level.
Most homeowners’ insurance policies include coverage for loss of use. This can help you pay for a hotel or home rental, along with your increased expenses for eating out during repairs.
Most Florida homeowners’ policies require such cooperation in order for the insurer to conduct its investigation. However, you are entitled to have an attorney present for such proceedings. If your insurer has requested a statement or EUO, call us today to discuss how we can assist you.
Every firm is different, but at our office, all cases accepted by our insurance attorneys in Jacksonville are taken on a contingency fee basis. We will either negotiate our fees with the insurer, or if a settlement is not reached, the court will determine what amount of fees the insurer must pay us.
No! We handle all types of homeowners’ insurance claims, from damage caused by an overflowing washing machine or broken pipe, to vandalism or theft. If you have experienced a covered loss at your home, and your insurer has not paid you everything to which you believe you are entitled, contact our attorneys today.