When making a water damage claim, it’s important to know how to maximize the amount of money you may be entitled to receive. Unfortunately, water damage occurs frequently in homes and other properties across Florida. Leaking roofs, broken pipes, and severe weather conditions can lead to a property sustaining water damage. Many property owners believe that having insurance will cover the water damage that has occurred on their property. However, this is not always the case.
If you’ve incurred water damage to your property, call The Law Place as soon as possible. One of our skilled lawyers will review your own insurance policy and determine what water damage is covered under your policy. Once your attorney has determined what your insurance policy covers, they will then fight to ensure that you receive sufficient funds to cover the costs of repairing or replacing items in your property that have been damaged by water. At our law firm, our attorneys have 75 years of combined experience with the Florida claims process and know how to win water damage claims quickly and efficiently. We guide our clients throughout the entire process and offer invaluable legal advice and support so that they are never left alone when making a water damage claim.
If you’re looking to cover water damage so that you’re not left with a huge repair or replacement bill, don’t hesitate to contact us. We keep our phone lines open 24/7 so you can get in contact with us whenever you want. Call us at (941) 444-4444 to schedule your free consultation with a skilled attorney at The Law Place today.
Common Causes of Water Damage
There are several causes of water damage to property. Damage caused by water can be detrimental to both your property and your health. Water damage can cause wood to rot and contamination to spread. Therefore, it’s important to know the causes of water damage in order to prevent it. Commons causes of water damage include:
- Leaking pipes – Damaged pipes can have disastrous consequences to any property. A plumbing leak is the biggest sign that a pipe has been damaged and therefore needs urgent repair. Older pipes are usually made from older materials that are more likely to corrode over time, so having these repaired or replaced quickly is crucial. Professional plumbers will be able to deal with your plumbing issue and help prevent additional leaking problems in the future.
- Faulty appliances – When an appliance is broken or faulty, leaks can occur, which normally lead to water damage. Identifying faulty appliances is incredibly important when solving the issues. For example, leaking HVAC equipment will usually be surrounded by a pool of water. If you’re unsure how to fix a leaking unit, call a plumbing professional. Broken appliances should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent further damage and leaks.
- Clogged drains – Drains can be clogged by hair and dirt and should be cleared as soon as possible. Clogged toilets and sinks can lead to more pipes becoming clogged throughout the home. Pouring boiling hot water down a drain followed by bicarbonate of soda and vinegar may help flush out debris in a pipe before it becomes too clogged and requires professional equipment to solve.
- Severe weather – Bad weather conditions can cause water damage in the property, particularly in states such as Florida, where hurricanes and other natural disasters are common. Heavy rains, hail, and strong winds can lead to roof leaks as well as flooding in a person’s property. It’s extremely important to check that your insurance policy covers water damage caused by severe weather conditions, including flooding, as property owners often have to purchase separate insurance policies to cover certain damages.
For a free legal consultation, call 941-444-4444
How Can I Maximize the Amount of Money I Could Receive to Cover Water Damage?
Without the support and advice of an experienced attorney, insurance claims can be difficult to file. Here are some steps to take in order to maximize recovery on your water damage claim:
Stop the Cause of the Damage
If you notice that you have water damage, it’s important that you act quickly to identify the cause of the problem and stop it quickly. For example, if you notice a pipe leaking, it’s highly recommended that you turn off the water to your house and contact a licensed plumber to deal with the problem if necessary. You should keep hold of plumbing bills as proof that the plumbing issue was dealt with by a professional.
Insurance claims are much more likely to be successful when the insurance company can see that the claimant did everything in their power to prevent further water damage from occurring. If your insurance company believes that the water damage could have been prevented and you failed to act quickly enough, they may reduce the final settlement that you may be entitled to.
Document Evidence of the Water Damage
In order to strengthen your insurance claim, you should gather as much photo and video evidence of the water damage as possible. You should take photographs of the damaged property as well as the suspected cause of the damage – if known. For example, if a pipe has leaked, you should take a photograph of the damage caused as well as the pipe itself.
Report the Damage to Your Insurance Company
Once you’ve collected as much evidence of the water damage as possible, you should report your insurance claim to your insurance company. Insurance companies should be notified soon after the water damage is discovered, as waiting to file an insurance claim may give your insurance company reason to devalue or dispute your claim.
Your insurance company must review and acknowledge a claim within 14 days of it being filed as per Florida Statute 627.70131. An insurance adjuster will examine your case and determine whether you are entitled to an insurance payout.
Avoid Insurance Company Vendors
If you’re successful in your water damage insurance claim, your insurance company may offer their own vendor to repair the damage or replace damaged items. We highly recommend rejecting this offer and hiring your own plumber or another tradesperson. This is because these vendors are directly contracted by your insurance company, and therefore they may not give an unbiased assessment when calculating the costs to repair the damage to your property.
Hire a Lawyer
Hiring a professional lawyer can significantly increase the likelihood of maximizing recovery on your water damage claim. For example, if your insurance company denies your claim, your lawyer will be able to fight the dispute and work tirelessly to ensure the insurance company’s payout is fair and reasonable.
Going through the legal process alone can not only be daunting but incredibly time-consuming. Therefore, an attorney at The Law Place will deal with all the necessary paperwork and file your claim on your behalf so that you don’t have to. Most of our attorneys have a maximum AVVO rating of 10.0, so we know what we’re doing when it comes to Florida law and insurance claims.
Water Damage Insurance Claims
Residents in Florida are required to purchase homeowners insurance. This home insurance usually covers wind and hail damage as well as water damage caused by burst pipes and broken appliances. However, it’s important to note that the homeowner’s policy doesn’t usually cover flood damage.
In Florida, most homeowners are required to purchase a separate policy to cover water damages caused by floods. Florida residents often purchase insurance policies under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) managed by FEMA. With an insurance policy under this program, Floridians are covered for water damage caused by floods. Standard flood insurance policies usually cover up to $250,000 worth of flood damage.
It’s important to read your insurance policy coverage thoroughly so that you know exactly what it covers. Many homeowner’s insurance policies in Florida don’t cover flood damage, and homeowners are often required to purchase multiple home insurance policies in order to cover damage in their homes. An attorney will review your insurance policies and inform you about what damage is covered under them.
Contact The Law Place Today
If you’re hoping to maximize the recovery on your water claim, call our law firm today. We’ll guide you through the insurance claims process and ensure that you get a fair settlement to cover the water damage that your property has sustained. At The Law Place, we have ample experience handling claims such as yours. If we believe you have sufficient grounds to file a claim, we won’t stop until we win your case.
Repairing damage caused by water can be incredibly expensive. Quick repairs to faulty appliances and leaking pipes normally only offer a temporary solution, and the costs to replace units and broken pipes are normally very costly. At our law firm, we prioritize the needs of our clients. We work on a contingency basis, so you won’t have to pay upfront for our services, and you’ll only be charged if we win your case.
Call us at (941) 444-4444 to schedule your free case evaluation today.