Insurance companies deny property claims for different reasons. In general, they may argue that your damages are not covered under your specific policy or that you lack documentation of your losses. In some cases, they may even believe that you engaged in criminal activity and are attempting fraud.
When you receive a denial for a property claim, you can hire a property insurance claims lawyer in Texas to help you. They can negotiate with an insurer and seek fair compensation for your damages.
An Insurance Company May Deny Your Claim Due to a Lack of Coverage
The most common reason for a denied property claim is a lack of coverage. Insurance policies are wrought with legal jargon and exclusionary clauses that insurers may utilize to deny a claim. What makes this even more complicated is that different policies are often required for different types of damages.
For example, hurricane insurance usually does not cover damages resulting from flooding. This may seem counterintuitive, but insurers often specify a cause for the damage they cover. If your damage does not directly result from the covered cause, they can deny your claim. So, the insurer might cover damages caused by a burst water heater but not an adverse weather event.
A denial on these grounds may make your situation seem hopeless. Yet, when you consult with a property damage lawyer, they can review the liable policy with a fine-toothed comb to see what options you have.
We have offices in Houston, Corpus Christi, and Victoria; and will travel to any corner of Texas if we are capable of preventing an injustice.
A Lack of Evidence Can Result in a Claim Denial
An insurer may also deny your property claim if you don’t have supporting evidence, such as photos and receipts for out-of-pocket expenses. Here, you could benefit from hiring a public adjuster to document your damage. They can conduct specific tests to help prove your property damage, such as mold tests.
A lawyer has access to the resources that could warrant an approval of your property damage claim. These resources include:
- Relationships with property damage experts
- Documentation of the incident that led to the damage
- Highlighted portions of your policy that the insurer overlooked
- Testimony from construction specialists (if your home suffered structural damage, for instance)
The more information you have to support your property damage claim, the less reason the insurer has to dispute it.
The Insurance Company Claims You Missed the Deadline
According to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), insurance companies have their own deadlines for accepting claims. Generally, you have one year from the date of the damage to file. If you miss this deadline, you risk losing your chance to receive compensation through an insurance settlement.
Still, insurance companies don’t always play by the rules. For instance, the claims adjuster may assert that you knew about a deadline––even if they purposefully didn’t share that information with you. A lawyer can review the details of your denied claim and see whether it breached any applicable deadlines. If they find that the insurer acted in bad faith, they can fight for your claim’s approval.
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A Missed Payment Could Invalidate Your Policy
As with any service, payment is required when it is rendered. If you failed to pay your premiums, an insurer may drop you or deny a claim. Most property owners have their premiums worked into their monthly mortgage payments, but every policy has its own nuances.
Many insurance companies have grace periods for lapsed payments, meaning that your policy won’t get canceled because you missed one. This is yet another reason to consult a lawyer. They can see whether the policy really lapsed or if the insurer is trying to get out of paying.
You need a skilled advocate to protect your legal rights and present your claim in such a way as to maximize your recovery.
You Allegedly didn’t Meet Your Deductible
Your deductible is how much you pay out of pocket before your insurance coverage kicks in. So, imagine that a drunk driver slammed into your garage door, and it needs replacing. Your policy might say that you must pay a $1,000 deductible before the insurance company covers the rest. If your damages don’t reach $1,000, then the insurer considers the damage minor, and you’re expected to pay for the damage yourself.
This is where it helps to get a second opinion. A public adjuster can examine the cost of your property’s damage, which can inform how much you’re expected to pay. If the insurer plain doesn’t honor the details of your policy, your lawyer can file a bad faith lawsuit or otherwise negotiate a settlement.
The Insurer Believes You Caused the Damage
Insurance adjusters are always on the lookout for fraudulent claims. This occurs when a person deliberately damages their property to get an insurance payout (or, at least, the insurer thinks they did). Here’s a situation that illustrates this point. You lose your home in a fire. You file a claim, and the insurer sends out an investigator to learn why the incident happened.
If the investigator believes that arson led to the fire, then the insurer could deny your claim, asserting that you caused it and don’t deserve a settlement. Having your settlement denied is an awful feeling—especially in the aftermath of a life-changing event like a house fire.
Still, if you take one thing away from this article, make it this: you have options if the insurance company denies your property damage claim. You don’t have to walk away from the claims process empty-handed. With a lawyer’s help, you could file an appeal and secure the compensation you need.
Our Property Insurance Claims Lawyers Are Here to Help
You are stressed out enough with your home repairs. You may have suffered property damage due to a natural disaster and are busy putting your life back in order. The last thing you want to deal with is a denied property claim.
The property insurance claims attorneys with Carrigan & Anderson, PLLC are here to help. We can gather evidence of your property damage and seek the payout that you deserve. During a free consultation, we can explain more about why insurance companies deny property claims and help you navigate the process. Call us today.
At Carrigan & Anderson, PLLC we can talk to you about your options and rights.