Picking up the pieces from the record breaking 1,000 mile Superstorm Sandy has not been an easy task for many on the East coast. Preliminary estimates of losses due to damage and business interruption are estimated at $65.6 billion (2012 USD), which would make it the second-costliest Atlantic hurricane, behind only Hurricane Katrina.
The vast majority of the property damage is in New York and New Jersey. Sandy damaged or destroyed more than 72,000 homes and businesses in New Jersey alone, according to Gov. Chris Christie.
Nor’easter complicates insurance for Sandy-struck businesses
Businesses and property owners in New York, Delaware and New Jersey that were preparing insurance claims for losses from Superstorm Sandy now have a second headache: how to deal with new losses from an early winter snow storm.
The Nor’easter is technically a 2nd occurrence. Insurance experts say the Nor’easter will only complicate what was already going to be a difficult and prolonged negotiation between commercial policy holders and insurance companies over what was covered, when and for how long.
Today, many property and business owners are frustrated dealing with insurance claims in the aftermath of Sandy and the Nor’Easter. Most insurance claims in the United States are grossly underpaid. In some cases, policyholders may choose to work with a public adjuster.
Do you need a public adjuster?
• Are you dealing with a wind storm insurance claim seeking an advocate who represents your interests, NOT the insurance company?
• Do you have no time, expertise or desire to deal with the burden of an insurance claim?
If you are concerned that your insurance claim has been underpaid, delayed or denied then you may consider a public adjuster.
A public insurance adjuster is the only type of claims adjuster who can legally represent the rights of an insured during an insurance claim process. They are an advocate who exclusively represents the interests of the policyholder (not the insurance company) in appraising and negotiating an insurance claim.
Public Adjusters main responsibilities include visiting the site of the loss to analyze the damages, making sure the loss is documented, prepare damage estimates, review your insurance policy for coverage, determine current replacement costs, determine values for settling covered damages, evaluate business interruption losses, determine building code upgrades, interpret policy, negotiate a settlement with the insurance company on behalf of the insured, handle paperwork required by the insurance company and re-open a claim and negotiate for higher settlement if a discrepancy is found after a claim has been settled.
Public adjusters typically contract to assist with complex, commercial property damage or high-value claims, but less often with minor losses. If you don’t have time, expertise or desire to deal with the burden of an insurance claim, using a public adjuster can be a valuable service.
How much should a public adjuster charge?
Regardless of price, you want to hire a reputable and experienced public adjuster. "Money matters but end results matter more," says Scott Friedson CEO of public insurance adjusting firm Insurance Claim Recovery Support LLC. "A good place to start getting fee and claim info is in our recent post Fifteen Insurance Claim Tips.”
Tips to remember before hiring a public adjuster…
• Make sure the person is licensed by your State's Department of Insurance.
• Find out what type of claims the licensed public adjuster specializes in. After disasters, sometimes out-of-state individuals will travel to another state to handle specialized claims such as Multifamily and Commercial Properties.
• Find out how long the individual has been a public adjuster.
• Is the firm a member of the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters?
• Ask for recommendations from others they have assisted and contact the individuals for their opinion of the work.
About the author…
Insurance Claim Recovery Support LLC (ICRS) is a leading public insurance adjusting firm headquartered in Austin, Texas who specializes in settling commercial property damage insurance claims solely on the behalf the insured policyholder (property owners, managers and lenders) NOT the insurance company on property damaged by fire, hail, wind loss, pipe bursts, hurricanes, tornadoes, flood, collapse, vandalism, business interruption and other property disasters.
Scott Friedson has more than 15 years of experience as an apartment owner, commercial real estate broker and the founder of Insurance Claim Recovery Support LLC (ICRS). He is a Licensed Public Adjuster in the following states: Texas # 1632488 | Oklahoma #0100118599 | Georgia #2874635 | Louisiana #574151 | Delaware #1294903 | Colorado #411678 | New Jersey #1502997
For more information, contact Scott Friedson 855-203-2226 or visit http://www.InsuranceClaimRecoverySupport.com or http://www.superstormsandyinsuranceclaim.com