How to Deal with an Insurance Adjuster after a House Fire

Posted on February 15, 2024


Long Nguyen | author

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ICHQ | Site Author

When you file a claim for a house fire with your insurance company, an adjuster will be assigned to your case. The fire insurance adjuster represents their insurance company and is invested in keeping their employer’s profits high and your settlement low.

You may be concerned about dealing with the insurance adjuster after a house fire, but you can always get legal guidance. Our fire damage attorneys in Louisiana serve New Orleans and the rest of our state. Contact us for advice on how to protect your claim with the insurance adjuster.

Who Are Fire Claim Adjusters?

An insurance adjuster is assigned to your fire damage claim soon after you file. The fire insurance adjuster can be the insurer’s own representative, or, they could be a contracted individual the insurance company hires.

When dealing with insurance adjusters after a house fire, it doesn’t particularly matter if they work for the insurer or for themselves. Independent adjusters may still want to minimize your claim so they can get repeat business from the insurance company.

How to Prepare to Meet With the Fire Claims Adjuster

There is no time to lose in getting your fire damage claim evaluated. After a fire, notify your insurance company as soon as you can so an adjuster can be assigned to your case.

If it’s deemed safe to do so by your fire department, take photos and record a video of your fire-damaged structure. Get a visual record of your lost belongings and use that to make a home inventory list of everything that was damaged by fire. If you can find receipts of valuable items, it’ll help the fire insurance adjuster confirm proof of ownership.

In the meantime, your insurance company may require you to mitigate further damage. You can get some repairs done with the services of a fire damage restoration company. Just be sure not to throw any belongings out until your fire damage claims adjuster has the opportunity to see them.

You can also get repair estimates from contractors before the adjuster visits to survey the fire damage.

Before you meet your fire claim adjuster, read through your home insurance policy. Familiarize yourself with the policy’s language so you’ll know that the insurance adjuster isn’t misrepresenting anything on in your documents during your upcoming conversation.

Dealing With the Fire Damage Adjuster During Your Meeting

Walk with the insurance adjuster through your home to show what’s been destroyed and any damage that could be easily missed.

Be courteous even if you disagree with the insurance adjuster’s remarks. You should ask the fire damage adjuster what else they may need to process your claim.

If the insurance company recommends vendors and contractors, know that you aren’t required to use them. Similarly, if the adjuster comes up with a settlement offer for the fire on the spot, you don’t need to accept it right away. Consider getting legal advice first.

After the meeting

Now that you’ve met with the insurance adjuster, follow up and confirm in an email what took place during their visit. Now is the time to send any documentation for repair estimates and cleanup costs. The fire damage adjuster may also need time to build a detailed report of their investigation. There’s no definite timeframe when you’ll hear back, but it’s a good idea to stay in constant communication.

Our Fire Damage Attorneys Work Closely With Adjusters

At Insurance Claim HQ, our lawyers are all too familiar with the tactics that the insurance company’s fire claim adjusters use to minimize payouts. We can get an independent adjuster of our own to learn what your claim is really worth, and negotiate with the insurance companies to pursue that full and fair compensation. If you want to speak with a fire claim attorney, contact our team online today.

FAQs About Fire Claim Adjusters

Can I hire my own fire claim adjuster to assess my damage?

Yes, you can hire a fire damage public adjuster to conduct an independent assessment. However, public adjusters for house fires aren’t as equipped for a legal battle as a fire damage attorney would be when you need to file a lawsuit against your insurer.

What should you not say to a fire insurance adjuster?

Try not to undervalue the worth of your belongings, as downplaying your damages can be what the adjuster uses to justify a lowball offer. However, avoid being dishonest and overinflating the amount. Don’t admit fault for the fire to the insurance adjuster either.

Can you argue with the fire insurance adjuster’s offer?

You should avoid being combative over the insurance adjuster’s offer for your fire loss claim. Instead, you can hire a property damage attorney who may get a second opinion through an independent adjuster’s evaluation.