Fires can lead to extensive damage of property, injuries to your loved ones, and loss of precious memories. Your homeowner’s insurance, in theory, is supposed to protect you when devastating events such as these occur. Yet despite everything you’re going through, many insurance companies will still try to deny you the help you need.
After a fire, be sure to hire an experienced fire damage attorney to fight back against insurance companies who try to deny your claim.
At Insurance Claim HQ, we know every trick and tactic that insurance companies use to deny legitimate claims from people like you. We work hard to fight back against unjust fire insurance claim denials to help our clients get back to normal. In this article, we will discuss common reasons insurance companies use to deny fire loss claims, unjustified denial reasons, and how an insurance claim attorney can help your claim succeed.
Common Reasons Insurance Companies Deny Fire Claims
The last thing you want to hear after a fire as a policyholder is that your insurance company is denying your fire insurance claim. Unfortunately, this is more common than you’d like to believe.
Insurance companies use a variety of different reasons to deny legitimate claims. Being aware of the most common reasons and taking preventative steps to avoid them can help you ensure your fire damage claim is successful.
Underinsurance of Property
Insurance policy coverage is determined by the potential value of your home. However, your insurance agent may not warn you that costs of repairs and reconstruction of damaged property often go up after a natural disaster. If your fire damage is caused by a forest fire or natural disaster, you may not have the comprehensive coverage you need to file a successful claim.
It is also important to maintain an updated record of your personal belongings. Many homeowners don’t have enough coverage to fully replace the value of everything lost during a fire or other disaster. But if you keep track of the value of your personal belongings, you’ll know if your current coverage is sufficient (and when to buy more).
Non-Payment of Insurance Premiums
Missing payments gives your insurance company an easy justification to deny your claim without further investigation. Paying your premiums on time helps ensure your coverage is always in effect.
Exaggerated Value of Lost Insured Property
Another great reason to keep an accurate record of personal property value is to prevent your insurance adjuster from accusing you of overestimating or exaggerating your claim. An up-to-date list or video-recording of your belongings is great evidence to protect you from this tactic.
Lack of Documentation
Victims failing to document fire damage or smoke damage leads to many fire claim denials. When dealing with a house fire, it may be hard to document damage caused by the fire while also making sure loved ones are safe and working with the fire department. However, it is important that you gather as much evidence as possible to protect yourself from claim denial. This evidence will be the key to proving your claim’s legitimacy to your insurance company.
Suspicion of Arson
As unfortunate as it may be, arson is one of the leading causes of fire insurance claim denials in Louisiana. Though your insurance company is unlikely to immediately accuse you or suspect arson, it is also not that uncommon for individuals to use arson to commit insurance fraud. Some use false faulty wiring claims or normal cracking to claim fire damage or structural damage. If your insurance company suspects your claim is the cause of arson, they will investigate, along with the police.
When filing a fire claim, it is important to be honest and transparent about your understanding of the cause and effects of the fire. As the property owner, keeping detailed documentation of any work done around the house, especially electrical work and financial records, can help to ensure you are not wrongly accused.
Justified vs Unjustified Denial of a Fire Insurance Claim
Although there may be legitimate reasons for many denials—such as non-payment of premiums, arson, or specific coverage exclusions—insurance companies also frequently deny fire claims unfairly. They are incentivized to avoid paying out claims as much as possible, so they’ll continue to look for any possible reason they can use to deny your claim until they have no other choice but to pay.
Sadly, companies will use often use vague policies such as oversight or lack of evidence to deny claims for homeowner’s insurance policies without a concrete reason.
How an Experienced Attorney Can Help You with Your Fire Claim
In these cases, it is important to have an experienced insurance bad faith attorney available who can represent you in communication with your insurance company and fight against any false claims.
By hiring a skilled insurance claim attorney from an experienced law firm, you give yourself an edge against insurance companies that deny you the compensation you deserve. Experienced attorneys know the tricks and language your insurance company uses to avoid paying as much money as you’re owed for your damages. They can work with independent claims adjusters to get an accurate value of your claim and can fight back through a bad faith lawsuit.
Insurance Claim HQ: Here to Fight for Your Fire Insurance Claims
After a fire, it can seem impossible to know what to do next. At Insurance Claim HQ, we know how devastating a fire can be for you and your loved ones, and we’re always willing to work hard for our clients when the insurance company unfairly denies their fire insurance claims.
Our experienced team of insurance claims lawyers are here to answer your questions, communicate with the insurance company during the claims process, and fight back against unjustly denied fire claims.
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.