Frequently Asked Questions2020-06-04T22:09:13+00:00
The Field Adjuster wants a recorded statement, what is that?2020-03-03T18:07:58+00:00

A recorded statement is a short audio statement given to your
Field Adjuster. This is put into the claim file and can be used as
evidence if you were to litigate your claim. If you are concerned as to
what you are legally required to answer during a recorded statement,
consulting with an Attorney may be helpful.

The Field Adjuster told me working with a Public Adjuster would preclude them from working with me on my claim2020-03-03T18:07:39+00:00

This is only partially true. When you work with a Public
Adjuster, that person becomes your representative. The Field
Adjuster would then communicate with you through your Public
Adjuster. Many Public Adjusters are skilled negotiators who will
ensure that any information provided to the Field Adjuster will merit
your claim.

I don’t have a copy of my policy, now what?2020-03-03T18:07:16+00:00

You can request a certified copy of your policy from the insurance
company or your insurance agent.

What are the qualifications to be a Field Adjuster?2020-03-03T18:06:59+00:00

For every company it is different. Often when a major disaster
occurs, the insurance company hires independent contractors with
no prior training and puts them into a short training course. This can
sometimes lead to wrongful coverage decisions due to the inexperience
of the Field Adjusters.

Do I have any responsibilities or duties that need to be completed in order to collect benefits for my claim?2020-03-03T18:06:42+00:00

You have a duty to mitigate against any further damage. If the insurance
company is not providing a preferred mitigation company, it may
be helpful to hire a third party. Speak to the Field Adjuster about
your duties. If the insurance company is asking you to use a
preferred contactor who will not be able to get to your home for a while
to do the mitigation work, make sure the Field Adjuster confirms in
writing that the delay caused by that contractor will not prejudice your
claim.

Is the Field Adjuster an employee of the insurance company?2020-03-03T18:06:24+00:00

Some Field Adjusters are employees of the insurance company while
others are independent contractors hired by the insurance companies.

I can’t afford an attorney, what do I do?2020-03-03T18:06:03+00:00

According to Florida Statute 627.428, your legal fees are paid by
the insurance company if you prevail or settle your suit. This means
that you don’t pay anything to have an attorney represent you in
your lawsuit against the insurance company. The attorney fees
will not affect any money you receive in a settlement with the
insurance company.

I called the insurance company several times to report my claim, but no one has returned my calls2020-03-03T18:05:43+00:00

You have a right to a timely response from the insurance company. If you
are unable to get in contact with a representative from the Insurance
company, consulting with a Public Adjuster or an Attorney may be
helpful.

I had to move out of my house, can I make a claim for additional expenses?2020-03-03T18:05:26+00:00

Depending on your policy, the insurance company may be required
to pay for your housing expenses during the period that you are
unable to live in the insured residence.

How long do I have to wait for the insurance company to make a determination on my claim?2020-03-03T18:05:05+00:00

The insurance company is supposed to make a coverage
decision within 90 days. Requests for additional information may
enlarge the window of time in which the insurance company has
to make a coverage determination. If you believe the insurance
company is taking too long to respond, consulting with a Public
Adjuster or an Attorney may be helpful.

How much money should the insurance company be paying?2020-03-03T18:04:23+00:00

The insurance company should put you back in your pre-loss condition.
Consulting with a Public Adjuster, Licensed General Contractor, or
an Attorney may help you determine how much money is required to
put you back in your pre-loss condition.

Will getting a second opinion jeopardize my claim?2020-03-03T18:04:05+00:00

No. The insurance company is not allowed to penalize you
for verifying that the recovery will put you back in your preloss condition. Ask a Licensed General Contractor or a Public
Adjuster how much it will cost to repair your home to its pre-loss
condition.

The insurance company issued me a check when the Field Adjuster visited my home. Is that all my claim is worth?2020-03-03T18:03:45+00:00

Most of the time, accepting a check will not preclude you from
seeking more funds. There have been many occasions where the Field
Adjuster has under-calculated the settlement amount. However, read
the check that is issued to you carefully. Some companies have been
known to include language on the check which would preclude
you from asking for additional funds. Consulting with a Public
Adjuster or an Attorney maybe helpful.

The Field Adjuster told me I could simply repair parts of my damaged home without having to replace them:2020-03-03T18:02:26+00:00

Whether something needs to be replaced or simply repaired is a
matter of debate. Sometimes a repair will put that part of your home
back in its pre-loss condition. Other times, a complete replacement
may be the better and longer-term fix. Getting a second
professional opinion from a Public Adjuster or a Licensed
General Contractor will not jeopardize your claim and may help
educate you on what is needed to put your home back in its pre-loss
condition.

The Field Adjuster told me not to work with a private contractor:2020-03-03T18:02:02+00:00

Some policies do contain provisions requiring you to work with
a preferred contractor or give the preferred vendor the right of
first refusal. Sometimes, Field Adjusters have been advised by the
insurance company to push your repairs to the insurance
company’s preferred contactor. These preferred contractors may give
the insurance company a better rate. Ask the Field Adjuster how
long it would take for their preferred contactor to come to your
home. You may be able to use a private contractor if the wait for their
preferred contractor is too long. It may be helpful to discuss with the
Field Adjuster your rights under the policy. If you have any further
questions, consulting with a Public Adjuster or an Attorney may be
helpful.

What is an Assignment of Benefits (AOB)?2020-03-03T18:01:45+00:00

An Assignment of Benefits, or an AOB, is a document signed by
a policyholder that allows a third party, such as a water
extraction company, a roofer, a mold remediation company, or a
plumber to act on the policy holder’s behalf and seek direct
payment from the insurance company. This assignment gives
them certain rights you have under the insurance contract,
including the right to demand payment for their services directly
from the insurance company. It also gives the third party asking
for the Assignment of Benefits the right to sue the insurance
company in the case of non-payment. Most of the time, this is
expedient for the homeowner because he/she doesn’t have to
worry about finding the money to pay the third-party contractor.
Many times, the contractor will assume the risk for non-payment
from the insurance company as a cost of doing business. If you
are concerned about signing an Assignment of Benefits, consult with an
Attorney.

I filed a claim, what are my rights as a property owner?2020-03-03T18:01:14+00:00

Many of your rights are defined in your policy. Reading the policy before
making a claim is highly recommended. Once you make a claim, the
insurance company should contact you within 14 days to schedule
an inspection. You have a right to be returned to your preloss condition. If you have any questions about what constitutes
your pre-loss condition, consulting with a Public Adjuster or an
Attorney may be helpful.

The Field Adjuster’s settlement offer seems low, am I entitled to more?2020-03-03T18:00:54+00:00

Most Field Adjusters are not licensed general contractors. They may be
from out of state and not educated on the actual construction costs in
your area. It is always recommended that you get a second
opinion from a Public Adjuster or a Licensed General Contractor. If
you are dissatisfied with the insurance company’s settlement offer, do
not sign any releases that the carrier sends you. Any release
that the insurance company has you sign may result in
waiving your entitlement to additional benefits.

What is a Public Adjuster and why are they asking for a portion of my recovery?2020-03-03T18:00:34+00:00

A Public Adjuster is an insurance adjuster who works for
you instead of the insurance company. They help advocate for a
larger recovery from the insurance company on your behalf. Many
times, an insurance Company’s goal is to pay the lowest settlement
that they can get the homeowner to accept. Sometimes, this
settlement offer is not enough to put you back in your
pre-loss condition. Alternatively, the insurance company may send
out someone to handle your claim who is not well versed in
Florida building codes or regulations. This may result in a lower
payment if you do not have someone advocating on your behalf.
A Public Adjuster, working on your behalf, will inspect your property to
make sure all areas of damage are documented, use software to create a
competing estimate, and coordinate all requests made by the
insurance company. The Public Adjuster will show the Field Adjuster
why additional funds are necessary to put you back in your pre-loss
condition. A Public Adjuster can also help you navigate the “red tape”
that is involved in filing a claim with the insurance company, including:
getting your claim to the right department inside the insurance
company, responding to requests for documentation, and insurance
company inspections.

What is a Field Adjuster?2020-03-03T17:59:45+00:00

A Field Adjuster is a representative of the insurance company who
will inspect the home and assist in making a coverage
determination on the insurance company’s behalf. They may also
be authorized to issue you a check on the insurance
company’s behalf. After a catastrophic storm, as a result of
staffing constraints, the insurance company may send Field
Adjusters from out of state to inspect your home. These Field
Adjusters may not be familiar with Florida construction code or
law.

I was involved in an accident with an Uber/Lyft vehicle. What do I do?2020-01-28T18:18:26+00:00

Whether you are a driver or a passenger of an Uber/Lyft vehicle, you may have a case depending on the circumstances. It is best to call an attorney as soon as possible.

I slipped & fell, what should I do?2020-01-28T18:17:04+00:00

If you were injured severely, be sure to request emergency medical care on the spot. If you are conscious, ask to speak with a manager and make sure you file a report and request a copy of the incident report. Take pictures of your injuries, where the fall happened and get the contact information from any witnesses to the accident. See a medical provider as soon as possible.

I was involved in a car accident, what should I do?2020-01-28T18:16:41+00:00

First and foremost, it really does depend on the severity of the accident. If you require medical treatment immediately, be sure to request it. However, if you are involved in an accident and are able to still drive, make sure you pull over to a safe location and call the police. Next make sure you take pictures of the scene, your vehicle, the other vehicles involved and all of your injuries. Take down all the other driver’s license and insurance information and get contact information from any witnesses to the accident. If you were injured, make sure you seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Lastly, organize your thoughts and write down all the details of how the accident happened, where it happened and any other information you think may be important. This is good to do while it is still fresh in your mind.

I don’t think I can afford a lawyer. How much will it cost?2020-01-28T18:14:42+00:00

You don’t pay anything unless there is a recovery in your case.

Why do I need an attorney?2020-01-28T18:14:20+00:00

Insurance companies often try to take advantage of individuals by offering a small amount of money to resolve the claim and move on as quickly as possible. Getting an attorney involved early will ensure that your rights are properly advocated.

CONTACT US FOR A
FREE CONSULTATION

OUR PRACTICE AREAS

Property damage and insurance claims

PROPERTY DAMAGE AND
INSURANCE CLAIMS

Personal Injury

PERSONAL
INJURY

Workers Compensation

WORKERS’
COMPENSATION

Vaccine Injuries

VACCINE
INJURIES