Illinois has been struck by the remnants of multiple hurricanes over the decades. The rain and winds that travel upward from these tropical storms can cause significant damage to your property. Many homeowners turn to their insurance companies for assistance with repair costs, only to have their claim delayed or denied.
Recovering compensation from your insurance company or appealing a denied claim is much easier with the assistance of a hurricane damage attorney. The experienced property damage attorneys from Nessler & Associates can help you obtain a fair settlement from your insurance company and fight a bad faith denial.
What Property Damage is Covered After a Hurricane
Most property insurance policies in Illinois cover severe storm, fire, and wind damage. Your insurance will likely cover damaged roofing or siding, broken windows, and felled trees after a storm hits. While your policy may cover water damage from leaks, flood damage is typically not covered unless you have separate homeowners’ and flood insurance policies.
Coverage also depends on your individual policy. Depending on the property insurance you purchased, it may not cover some damages caused by a hurricane or tropical storm.
Review your policy with a skilled attorney from Nessler & Associates, who can help you understand your policy’s terms and determine what’s covered. We can also assist you with filing a hurricane property damage claim for compensation.
Common Challenges When Filing Claims
Homeowners may face multiple challenges when trying to recover compensation for hurricane damage during the claims process. A hurricane damage insurance claim attorney at Nessler & Associates can help you with the following complications when filing a claim:
Proving What Was Damaged
Your insurance company requires proof that you owned the property damaged in the hurricane. To file a claim with your insurance company, you must provide them with the following information:
- When the damage occurred
- Description, count, and monetary value of what was damaged
- Receipts or contracts proving ownership
- Serial numbers for high-value devices like home appliances or computers
- Value appraisals of the damaged property
Many people have difficulty finding this information after a hurricane. Your insurance company may only accept your claim if you provide the necessary information or documentation.
The attorneys at Nessler & Associates can help you document your losses, collect proof of ownership, and obtain accurate property appraisals. We will use all this information to help you get the insurance coverage you are owed to restore your property to good condition.
Adjusters Undervaluing Your Damages
After a hurricane, insurance companies may have to pay several property damage claims at once. Many insurers will deliberately try to pay homeowners less than what they’re owed by undervaluing the damage to the property to save money.
To investigate your claim, the insurance company will send an adjuster to inspect your property and estimate the damages. They use this estimate to pay your claim, so the adjuster’s report can significantly impact your final settlement check amount.
When an insurance adjuster examines the damage left by the hurricane, they may deliberately underestimate the cost of the damage. This dishonest behavior allows your insurance to pay you less than you need to repair the damages to your property.
Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t realize they’ve been lowballed until they’ve accepted the settlement, leaving them unable to negotiate the value of their losses.
The property damage lawyers at Nessler & Associates can help you obtain an independent and fair evaluation of your damages. We will then use this appraisal to negotiate a fair settlement with your property insurance providers.
Insurance Acting in Bad Faith
Far too many insurance companies use bad-faith tactics to deny your claim unfairly. An insurer who unethically refuses to cover your damages may:
- Offer you less than what you’re owed
- Deliberately delay handling your claim, then denying your claim when deadlines have passed
- Deny your claim with no explanation
- Deny compensation for damage covered by your policy
- Accuse you of making a fraudulent claim
Many insurers who act in bad faith rely on their customers not understanding laws regarding insurers. Section 154.6 of the Illinois Insurance Code prohibits insurance companies from acting in bad faith, making it illegal for companies to refuse your claim for no reason or fail to respond to and investigate your case.
A property insurance claim lawyer at Nessler & Associates can take legal action against your insurance company for acting in bad faith, allowing you to recover compensation for your insurer’s unlawful behavior.
When to Hire a Hurricane Damage Attorney
Many people file a hurricane insurance claim independently because they believe a lawyer is unnecessary. However, hiring an attorney before filing ensures your claim moves as smoothly as possible.
The legal team at Nessler & Associates can help you understand your insurance policy, file your claim, and prevent your insurance company from delaying processing your claim or making a payout. We understand how to negotiate with insurers and what evidence to submit with your claim to ensure timely processing that helps you get your house back to normal.
Hiring a lawyer is sometimes necessary, even if you believe you can handle your claim on your own. If your property sustained serious damage, your claim is denied, or your insurance company acts uncooperatively, schedule a consultation with Nessler & Associates. Our attorneys will curb any unlawful behavior from your insurer and help you receive a fair settlement amount.
Nessler & Associates Can Handle Your Hurricane Damage Claim
In the aftermath of a hurricane, you may not have the energy to battle your insurance company alone. The attorneys at Nessler & Associates will take on the challenge for you. We will carefully review your policy and help you with every step of the claims process to ensure that your insurance pays you what you’re owed under your policy.