January 19, 2022
Dealing with an insurance adjuster
Although most people are usually intimated by insurance adjusters, knowing how to deal with them properly can help with your claim after hail damage. Learn about the role of an adjuster and the potential outcomes of your meeting beforehand.
Importance of an adjuster
An insurance adjuster is usually tasked with the role of finding out the extent of the damage after a hailstorm. They will assess the condition of the entire roofing structure, including the siding and the shingles as well as your insurance claim. Roofing contractors can work with insurance adjusters, but the latter has to be licensed. It is better to work with someone that has an affiliation with your insurance company.
The adjuster must be accurate in their assessment as they will recommend the cost of the damage. They also assess the cause of the damage by looking at the areas of hail impact. They may also check the interior of your property for more damages and ask you some questions.
If you can’t reach a roofing contractor to help you document the damage, you can do it yourself. Take pictures of hail marks as well as pictures of other damaged areas. Document the day and time of the hailstorm as well, and make sure you cover all areas, including an air conditioning unit. Pictures of the dents before the ice melts can strengthen your case.
Understand your policy
Knowing the details of your policy can also help you deal with the insurance adjuster effectively. You’ll be able to accept the payout to deserve instead of accepting a lower amount. You will also know the procedures to follow if the insurance adjuster says no to hail damage. Understand the valuation method for the hail damage, your actual cost value, and the replacement costs indicated in the policy. Check the calculation method indicated as well.
Know the legal obligations
Every insurance company has a mandate to pay up eligible claims. Check the areas covered by your policy if hail damage is included. If that’s the case, the company is required by law to assess the damage on your property. And reimburse you for the damages. Check the time frame allocated for the evaluation and the duration for the payout in case of a settlement.
You are also obligated to meet the requirements set by the insurance company. For instance, you should maintain your roof regularly to keep it in good shape to prevent the adjuster from having excuses to deny your claim. A well-maintained roof will give you the proof you need to take legal action if the insurance adjuster says no hail damage.
What to do when the adjuster says no
Ask for a detailed explanation.
Asking your adjuster to break down their reasons for coming to that decision will give you a clear understanding and help you find proof to disapprove them to put it in writing so you can have enough time to go through it. You will determine if their decision is fair, or if you can negotiate and get a different outcome.
Get a second opinion.
Ask the insurance to send a different insurance adjuster. You could tell them you had different opinions with the first adjuster. If the second adjuster comes to the same conclusion as the first, you can hire a public adjuster. Since they won’t be working for the insurance company, the public adjuster will be able to give you an unbiased evaluation and conclusion. Make sure they are experienced and knowledgeable.
Arrange a meeting with your contractor
Sometimes a meeting with your roofing contractor can help you dispute the decision by the adjuster. Call your contractor as soon as possible, and they will assess the damage and document everything professionally.
The qualifications of the roofers also place them in a better position to discuss the claim with the adjuster. A meeting will also allow the contractor to disagree with the insurance adjuster in person, and that will also strengthen your case.
This should be your last resort. If the insurance company still refuses to pay for the damages even after showing them strong evidence, you can take them to court. Make sure you have a copy of the policy, and you understand the terms and conditions of the compensation. Have any other evidence like the pictures of the damage and the documentation of the assessment done by roofing contractor close by.
Tips for dealing with hail damage
You should also know the time limit of filing the hail damage claim. Know the boundaries of any other potential repair sources such as manufacturer’s warranties and contractors’ warranties. The warranties may not help you with hail damage even if your roof is still new.
If you have a valid insurance claim, you should file it even if there is minimal damage on the roof. Be ready for the possibility of having the damaged sections repaired rather than the entire roof being replaced.
It is in rare situations that an insurance adjuster says no hail damage and refuses to approve a claim. In most cases, they will give you lower compensation that you can negotiate and increase. The insurance company may also recommend a specific roofing company to work with, but you can also dispute that and have a different company do the job.
Sellers Roofing Company – New Brighton has all your roofing needs covered. We are here to help with roof replacements, repairs, and even insurance claims and paperwork. Call us today for fast and efficient restoration of hail damage, wind damage, or any other roof damage.