West Palm Beach First Party Storm Damage Lawyer
On its face, homeowner’s insurance appears to be a two-way street. You pay your premiums to the insurance company, and get peace of mind knowing that the insurer will cover your losses in the event of a storm that causes property damage. It can be frustrating when the company refuses to pay out a rightful claim, particularly when your rights seem clear.
Florida law protects your rights when an insurer engages in bad faith practices in violation of the law. Our team at The Pendas Law Firm are dedicated to holding insurance companies accountable for their misconduct, so please contact our office to speak with a West Palm Beach first party storm damage lawyer today.
Overview of First Party Storm Damage Claims
An insurance policy is a contractual relationship between you and the insurer, where you’re both bound by the terms and conditions of the agreement. If you need to make a claim for damage from a weather-related event, you stand in the position of a first party to seek reimbursement for your losses. Assuming you pay your premiums in full and on time, you assume your insurance company will uphold its side of the bargain.
Unfortunately, insurers can be stingy when faced with first party storm damage claims like yours. The claims adjuster may contest the amount or find a loophole that absolves the company from paying out for your property damage. In some situations, this conduct amounts to bad faith insurance practices in violation of the law. Florida statutes and rules of the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (FOIR) require good faith and fair dealing, so there are remedies for policyholders.
Spot the Signs of Bad Faith in First Party Storm Damage Claims
There may be legitimate, legal grounds for an insurance company to deny a claim, and an attorney can help you understand whether the action is proper. Still, you should look out for other signs of bad faith, such as:
- Not investigating your claim;
- Contesting your receipts or supporting documentation;
- Failing to communicate with you regarding receipt of your claim;
- Ignoring your questions about status;
- Repeatedly handing your claim off to another adjuster;
- Failing to respond within 14 days after you file your claim, as required by law;
- Disputing coverage by citing a loophole in your policy;
- Not paying out your approved claim within 20 days, as required by law; and,
- Other suspicious conduct.
Legal Remedies for First Party Claimants
FOIR is tasked with enforcement of bad faith laws in Florida regarding first party storm damage claims. However, you can also take matters into your own hands by filing a lawsuit in court. You can seek monetary damages for the losses you sustain, and you may be entitled to equitable relief. You’ll need to prove that the insurer unlawfully withheld payment for a proper claim, which conduct amounts to bad faith.
Trust a West Palm Beach First Party Storm Damage Lawyer with Your Claim
For more information on your rights in a first party storm damage claim, please contact The Pendas Law Firm. We can schedule a consultation to review your circumstances and explain potential remedies.