The Wall Street Journal has reported that Hurricane Ian will likely result in legal disputes between Florida home insurers and homeowners who are trying to piece back together their lives following the 155 mph winds from Ian that resulted in forceful ocean surges and detrimental downpours.
Industry experts predict that the trend will be for home insurers to avoid payouts by blaming flood damage and not wind and other damage covered by homeowner’s insurance, as flood damage is excluded from standard homeowner’s policies.
Millions of Americans nationwide, not just in Florida, do not have separate flood insurance policies, and the majority of those that have purchased flood insurance policies reside in coastal areas.
Experts also believe that Hurricane Ian will drive Florida-based insurance companies into bankruptcy. This year already, six small Florida-based insurers were pushed into insolvency, and numerous others have stopped writing new policies. This will only make it harder and costlier for Floridians to obtain property insurance.
According to records from the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, after Hurricane Irma ran its course through Florida in 2017, insurance companies denied about 30 percent of the nearly 1 million claims filed. After Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the denial rate for Florida property insurance claims was about 40%.
Recovery from Hurricane Ian will likely be very difficult and delayed due to inflation, high interest rates, costs of repairs (labor and materials), and other pending litigation. Storm damage claims from Hurricane Ian are projected to take more than a year to resolve.
Now that Hurricane Ian has passed, you may be wondering how to start the repair and rebuild process in Spring Hill, Brooksville, or elsewhere in Hernando County. While insurance companies are juggling numerous claims right now, the sooner you gather all your necessary documents and submit your claim, the better.
Steps to Take Now that Hurricane Ian Has Passed
- Document ALL damage to your home.
Get your phone out and start snapping away – take numerous pictures and videos of all your home’s damage from Ian. Make sure and get the surrounding areas that show any fallen trees, downed power lines, and other damage that can help show the devastation created by Ian in your specific neighborhood.
- Hire a Professional to Inspect Your Home – Even if You Think there is Zero Damage.
Just because you think your home is fine, does not mean that is necessarily true. You could have roof damage, siding damage, and other exterior damage that is not visible to untrained eyes. Hurricane and storm damage can often be subtle, and may present itself more clearly months to even years following a storm.
- Contact Our Spring Hill and Brooksville Hurricane and Storm Damage Insurance Claims Lawyers at Whittel & Melton – 352-666-2121
It’s important to set up property inspection from a licensed professional, review your insurance policies, document all your losses, and fight back against any delays or denials from your insurance provider, and we want to be there for you in all of these endeavors. We urge you to not delay and get in touch with us today in Spring Hill and Brooksville by calling us at 352-666-2121 or contact us online 24/7.