When a hurricane rolls over a region – like Hurricane Ida that recently hit Louisiana – there is always an influx of hurricane damage claims in the following few days. If your home, business, or other property is damaged by a hurricane, then you will be adding to that influx, too. After all, you have hurricane damage insurance for a reason. But using that insurance might be more difficult than you expect.
More Claims Mean More Trouble
Insurance companies hate paying out a single claim. It is their business to not pay claims at all because that is how they make a profit and look good to investors. Now, imagine how upset an insurance company board will be after a natural disaster like a hurricane causes not dozens, not hundreds, but thousands of its policyholders to file a claim all within a few days of each other. If they honor all of those claims, then it could mean the insurance company drains its coffers of millions upon millions of dollars.
To try to protect its finances, an insurance company might do the following after a hurricane:
- Deny more claims without giving a valid reason why.
- Delay more claims as much as possible, like waiting until the last day to enact the next step in the process.
- Devaluing more claims by not sending an appraiser to review the damage.
The end result is that policyholders are usually the ones who suffer the most for several reasons after a hurricane. Not only do they have to deal with the aftermath of the storm, but they also have to deal with an insurance company that might already have plans to disrespect their claim.
Should You Still File a Hurricane Claim for Small Damage?
If insurance companies tend to make life difficult for people who need to file hurricane damage claims, is it worth it to file one if your property was only minimally damaged? Yes! Do not let the insurance company push you around or deter you by saying that it is “too busy” to handle your claim. Every claim is important, and you paid the company already for your property damage coverage. It’s on the insurer to figure out how to bring more people on board after a hurricane as temporary workers so that the company can process more claims in the same amount of time. That responsibility is not on you, so don’t end your own claim before it begins just because it might be more difficult than normal to get the coverage you deserve.
If you need help with a hurricane damage claim in New Orleans, let Womac Law Firm help you. Call 504.470.3935. We take calls 24/7/365 for client emergencies.