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Hurricane Ian Claims: Here’s Where To Begin

by John Hensley
Hurricane Ian Claims: Here's Where To Begin

Hurricane Ian landed in Western Florida on September 28, 2022, as a category four hurricane. With a wind speed of about 150 mph, Ian was one of the strongest hurricanes to ever land in the United States. Hurricane Ian subjected the affected region to extreme winds, torrential rain, and storm surges.

According to a hurricane Ian claims lawyer, your storm and hurricane damage claim will be in safe hands with a professional by your side. Here is everything you need to know about filing an insurance claim after Hurricane Ian.

How to File an Insurance Claim after Hurricane Ian

When a hurricane or storm comes around, it can wreak havoc for everybody, damaging cars and houses or injuring people. This leads to thousands of personal injury claims or damaged property claims, all reaching the same insurance companies.

Only five days after Ian pummeled its way through Florida, over 222,000 insurance claims were filed, with an estimated loss of $1.6 billion. The numbers are expected to increase considerably, with estimates as high as $40 billion.

Steps to Filing a Hurricane Claim

If you have suffered damage to your business or home due to hurricane Ian, you first must seek legal help from a hurricane claims lawyer to guide you through the process. Renters, homeowners, and business insurance companies operate on the same guiding principles as car insurance companies, namely, to settle claims as cheaply and quickly as possible.

After you consult with the hurricane claims attorney, you need to contact your insurance company. You must let them know that you have suffered damages and ask them to send an adjuster to assess the damage. Take notes and pictures of the losses and damages you have sustained. Regardless of how vivid the issues may seem at the moment, consider they will fade with time, and you will end up trying to recall details that are obscured in your memory.

An insurance adjuster will come to your property to inspect it and write a report of the damages, which will then be used to determine your claim’s amount. While it is the adjuster’s responsibility to investigate your hurricane claim accurately, it’s in your best interest to have supporting evidence.

As soon as the insurance company receives the adjuster’s report, they will decide whether or not to approve your claim. If they approve your claim, the insurance company will make you an initial settlement offer. Your attorney can counter the initial offer if it does not cover all the damages you have suffered. Once you agree on a settlement, the insurance company will send you a check for the claim amount minus the hurricane deductible.

Conversely, if they deny your claim, your insurance company will send you a letter explaining their decision. However, you have to right to appeal the decision.

How Long Do You Have to File a Hurricane Claim in Florida?

Under Florida Law Statute 627.70132 Notice of Windstorm or Hurricane Claim, you have three years to file your claim from the date the storm makes landfall or the weather reaches and damages your property. Generally, the period immediately after extreme weather can be the busiest for insurance adjusters, so responding and acknowledging your claim may take longer than usual. Despite this, you have three years between the property damage and when you can no longer claim.

However, the sooner you file your claim, the better. Throughout the claim process, various forms must be completed, which might become harder to fill as time passes. It would be easier to compile loss and damage lists and estimates shortly after hurricane Ian as opposed to two years later. Moreover, the damage caused by hurricane Ian could lead to different processes in the months ahead. Although the deadline for flooding or roof damage may be similar, the way the damage cases are handled is not.

With a professional by your side, your hurricane Ian claim will be safe, and you won’t have to worry about time limits. While this area of law can be somewhat confusing, and you may have concerns about the differences in law between storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, or fires. Luckily, a hurricane claims attorney knows how to support you through the claim process.

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