Orlando residents are accustomed to dealing with the damage caused by hurricanes and tropical storms that blow across the state during the Atlantic hurricane season. In 2022, Hurricane Ian alone caused more than $200 million in property damage to Orange County homes and businesses as hurricane-force winds blew through the area, dumping over a foot of rain across the city. When your Orlando home or business suffers roof damage, you turn to your insurance company to cover the cost of repairing the damage or replacing the roof. What happens if your insurance company fails to pay your claim?
The good news is that help is available if your insurance company has denied, delayed, or underpaid your Orlando roof damage claim. The experienced Orlando roof damage insurance claim attorneys at Malik Law are well-versed in the numerous and varied tactics insurance companies employ to justify not paying claims timely and in full. Let us help you with your insurance claim if it has been underpaid, denied, or delayed.
Why Was My Roof Damage Claim Underpaid, Denied, or Delayed?
As a business owner or homeowner, you understandably want to protect your financial investment. One common way to protect a home or business property is to purchase an insurance policy that covers losses caused by things such as theft or natural disasters. Your insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurance company. Your obligations under the contract include things such as paying your premiums on time and reporting losses as soon as possible. In return, your insurance company is obligated to process claims and reimburse you for covered losses in a timely manner. While this sounds simple and straightforward, you must also remember that an insurance company is a business and that business must make a profit each year to remain in business. That means your insurance company has a vested interest in minimizing the amount of money paid out each year in claims. To justify delaying, denying, or underpaying claims, insurance companies use a variety of common tactics, including:
- Endless requests for forms and paperwork. Does it seem like your insurance company asks you for a new form or document every few days? If so, you are not alone. Insurance companies often try to bury claimants in paperwork and document requests as a way to delay paying claims. They also know that some claimants will eventually give up, allowing the insurance company to avoid paying the claim at all.
- The fine print — exclusions. Like most contracts, your insurance policy includes “fine print.” Exclusions to coverage are typically buried in that fine print. For example, most Florida homeowner’s insurance policies exclude coverage for flood waters and include separate deductibles and coverage limits for hurricane damage. When a roof damage claim is submitted, an insurance company may claim that the damage is caused by an excluded loss or that a higher deductible applies.
- Repair vs replacement. Most new insurance policies include replacement coverage – but not all. To avoid paying claims, insurance companies claim that the damage is too extensive to be repaired and, instead, the roof must be replaced. Since you do not have replacement coverage, the claim is outright denied.
- Cosmetic damage. At the other end of the spectrum, insurance companies also try to avoid paying claims by asserting that damage is only cosmetic, not structural. Shingles missing that did not (yet) lead to a leak might be categorized as cosmetic; however, those missing shingles often lead to additional loose shingles that can ultimately cause costly damage.
- Third-party liability. Claiming that a third party caused or contributed to the reason for the damage allows an insurance company to evade liability or limit their liability exposure. With roof claims, this often means blaming the installer, manufacturer of materials, or a company that previously performed maintenance or repairs on the roof.
Steps to Take If Your Orlando Roof Damage Claim Was Denied, Delayed, or Underpaid
Roof damage can cause extensive damage to the structure of your home or business as well as damage to the contents of your home or office if exposed to wind and rain because of the damaged roof. It can also leave you feeling extremely vulnerable and without a safe place to live or work. If you filed an Orlando roof damage insurance claim and that claim was denied, delayed, or underpaid, you have legal rights and options. Not only do you have the legal right to question the delay in processing if that delay appears unreasonable, but you also have the right to dispute an underpayment or denial.
To increase the likelihood of resolving your claim quickly and satisfactorily, you should work with an experienced Orlando roof damage insurance claim attorney. Your attorney will review your insurance policy, evaluate the value of your claim, and attempt to negotiate a full and fair payment for the roof damage. If an out-of-court settlement cannot be reached, your attorney will advocate on your behalf in the judicial system, including trial. Let the Orlando roof damage insurance claim lawyers at Malik Law put their extensive experience, vast resources, and unwavering commitment to work for you to get your claim paid in full.
Get Help from Experienced Orlando Roof Damage Insurance Claim Attorneys
The Orlando roof damage insurance claim attorneys at Malik Law P.A. are dedicated to advocating on your behalf if your roof damage claim has been delayed, underpaid, or denied. Our goal is to get your claim processed in a reasonable amount of time and ensure that your insurance company offers you a full and fair settlement for the losses you experienced.
Call us at 407-500-1000 or submit our online form today. One of our experienced Orlando roof damage insurance claim attorneys will explain your rights to you and discuss your legal options at no cost.