Preparing to File a Fire Insurance Claim?
California Fire Claim Lawyer Details the Process
It is impossible to avoid a deep feeling of loss a when you lose a home or business in a fire. Additionally, fire damage to property is often unexpected, leaving victims confused over what to do next. The last thing you need during this time is the stress of arguing with insurance companies. Unfortunately, negotiating with the insurance company is usually unavoidable. Adjusters will use every tool available to minimize your settlement or to deny your fire insurance claim altogether. If you are already struggling with practical concerns, like where your family will live, then you should not have the added stress of fighting for a fair resolution to your fire insurance claim. An attorney can defend your rights and negotiate with the insurer on your behalf – and our lawyers do not take any part of your insurance proceeds as fees. Your insurance settlement is yours to keep.
Attorney Mary Alexander believes that you should know your rights and the process of filing a fire insurance claim. By following the proper steps, you can mitigate the side effects of losing your home or business. If you believe your claim is undervalued, then our firm may be able to help you come to a swift and favorable resolution with the insurance company. If you think there was an error with a report, then we can help you identify it. No matter the size of your fire claim, we can review the details and let you know how to proceed. Contrary to popular belief, our attorneys will not take a portion of your insurance settlement, so do not hesitate to call. We are currently partnering with attorney Mark P. Robinson of Robinson Calcagnie, Inc. to represent victims of the Santa Rosa fires, which resulted from negligence power line maintenance by PG&E.
What Do I Do After a Fire?
If you lost your home or property in a fire, then you should first make sure that you and your loved ones are safe. If anyone requires medical attention, then they should be treated. Put out any smoldering debris and items that could be further damaged. Immediately thereafter, you should call your insurance company or agent and inform them of your losses. Ask your agent how long you have to file and use this as a way to prioritize your time. If you can, find out what damage is covered in your policy and if your claim exceeds your deductible. Usually, it is best to decline to answer detailed questions about the event until you talk to a lawyer.
If possible, make temporary repairs to your home to make it livable. However, if you cannot live in your home due to damage, then prepare to contact your insurance company about temporary living expenses. In general, insurance companies will advance at least 20 percent of the insurance on your home, which you can use to find accommodation. Depending on your policy, this may be in addition to the money for rebuilding or repairing your home.
After you have secured temporary housing, you should inventory everything you lost in the fire. The sooner you do this the better. If possible, ask immediate and extended family and friends – people who are familiar with your home – to help you. Categorize every item by room. Do not throw away any damaged items you come across. Keep them as physical evidence, as your insurance company may refuse to compensate you for items you no longer have. If your house is not a total loss, then protect and secure the property. Afterwards, continue to pay your premiums and go over your policy details.
A qualified fire claim attorney can assist you at any stage of the process – and the sooner you get legal advice, the better.
When Do I Close a Fire Claim?
You are in control of your fire insurance claim. However, you may not feel that way when dealing with insurance adjusters. They may pressure you into closing as soon as possible or request you sign an agreement against your best interests. Regrettably, insurance companies may try to take advantage of situations like this. They know the stress you are under when you lose your possessions and home. If you settle too early, then you may miss out on compensation for properties you forgot about or items you did not know can be covered.
While homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover flood damage, they can cover water damage. For example, if there is a leaky roof in your home after a fire, causing additional damage, then this may be covered. The damage from trees that have fallen on your home may also be part of a fire claim. If your car has been totaled, then you may be able to get the cash value of the vehicle. There are many other factors that determine what items you may include in your claim as well. You can maximize the compensation by hiring an experienced fire claim lawyer.
Questions After a Fire? Call a San Francisco Fire Insurance Claim Lawyer Now
Has your fire insurance claim been denied? Are adjusters undervaluing your property and assets? Still waiting on settlement payments? Are you still making repairs on your home, long after a claim? No matter the details of your case, our law firm can help. Mary Alexander & Associates, P.C. has been helping victims of fire damage for years. Past success includes multiple multimillion dollar settlements. With our experience and respected status, you can be confident with your claim.
Having an experienced attorney in your corner can help even the odds with the insurance companies. Feel confident about your future. Call our San Francisco, California office today at (415) 433-4440 or contact us online. At no cost to you, we can review the details of your claim and let you know if we can help.