Handling Your Storm & Flood Insurance Claim
As Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas coastline, it dealt over five billion dollars in damage. Many homes and businesses in Galveston, Corpus Christi and throughout Houston suffered damage due to high winds, debris and flooding. If you are a home owner or business owner affected from Hurricane Harvey, you will need to know how to deal with your insurance company.
After the storm, your first priority should be to make sure that your family is safe and secure. If you have downed power lines or other dangerous conditions on your property, notify the authorities. Once it’s safe, you need to investigate the damage. Conditions can change, so we advise reporting damage to your insurance company as soon as possible. Although this process can be difficult, knowing what to expect can relieve some of the stress.
Estimating Cost of Storm Damage
A visual inspection is the first step towards estimating the cost of storm damage. Photograph the exterior of your home, making note of broken windows, missing roof shingles, holes or dents in any walls, and damaged A/C unit(s). Photograph the interior of your home next, making note of broken electronics, flooded rooms and floors, and damaged furniture.
Even if there isn’t noticeable damage or flooding, we recommend bringing a licensed contractor to your home. The contractor may find structural issues that can go unnoticed until months later, when mold or rot has set in. Worse yet, you may have to pay out of pocket for those costs if you do not initially report that damage to the insurance company.
To complete your estimate, arrange the approximate damage costs in a claim letter to your insurance company. Most Texas insurers will want you to include photographs, contractor estimates and any receipts with the letter. Once filed, the insurance company will schedule a time to send out an adjuster to take a look at your property. When the insurance adjuster completes his inspection, he will write a report and make a counter claim. Often times, the counter claim can be surprisingly low.
Negotiating with Texas Storm Insurers
You have the option to negotiate with your insurance adjuster, but it can be very difficult to do. Insurance companies want to make a profit, so they will often low-ball any claim or negotiation. The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) for example, is notorious for reducing, delaying and denying payment and claims. Worse yet, if you are thinking of taking your insurer to court, a new law taking effect September 1, 2017 limits insurer liability.
Texas Hurricane, Storm & Flood Insurance Claim Lawyers
Tylka Law Firm Texas storm and flood insurance attorneys understand what you are going through. Property damage and cleanup after a hurricane as strong as Harvey is difficult. Insurance companies should make it easier, but often times take advantage of your crisis. If your insurance company is not offering the full value of your claim, Tylka Law attorneys can help you.
We enforce damage claims stemming from gale force winds, wind-driven rains, hail or flooding:
- Roof damage, broken windows and leaks
- Loss of contents (vehicles, furniture, electronics, air conditioning, etc.)
- Alternative living expenses (ALE) while the home is repaired or replaced
- Structural damage or mold damage
With the loss and chaos after a devastating storm or flood, you should not have to fight with your insurance company. We take on the burden and work to resolve your claim as quickly as possible. If you need help dealing with your storm or flood insurance company, call the phone number or use the contact form below. We’ll get back to you normally within one business day.
League City Office
Toll Free: 877-762-0066
Toll Free: 877-762-0066