North Carolina Hurricane Florence Insurance Claim Denials
When Hurricane Florence made landfall on September 14, 2018, it left devastation in its wake. Communities in North Carolina ranging from the Outer Banks to large cities were damaged by heavy winds, soaking rains, and rising tides.
Fortunately, many of the people affected by this disaster obtained property insurance covering their homes, cars, and businesses. While this insurance should clearly provide compensation in the event of a loss due to a natural disaster, insurance companies make their profits by collecting premiums but failing to pay claims.
North Carolina Hurricane Florence insurance claim denials could mean disaster for a policyholder’s finances. Regardless of the company’s stated reason for a denial, this refusal to pay can devastate a person’s life. A dedicated attorney could help you fight back to get the coverage you need.
The Purpose of Homeowner’s Insurance in North Carolina
North Carolina is one of a few states to not require homeowner’s insurance. Still, many mortgage companies may require their recipients to obtain coverage. Every policy is different, but a policy will typically protect the homeowner in case of property damage caused by natural disasters.
A close reading of the policy is necessary to understand the exact parameters of coverage provided. This is especially true in the event of damage caused by a hurricane. Catastrophic events such as these can bring about damage from many sources.
For example, Hurricane Florence subjected homes to damage caused by:
- Wind tearing at roofs and walls
- Heavy rains causing flooding
- Flying debris
Many homeowners’ policies specifically deny coverage for some of these conditions. An attorney could help examine a policy after a denial to explore a person’s options going forward.
The Insurance Claims Process After Hurricane Florence
Even before filing a claim a homeowner should attempt to document their losses prior to contacting the insurance company. While an insurance company should accurately report the damages, they can also attempt to minimize losses to limit their liability.
Once this is done, a claim can be filed by contacting the insurance company via a phone call or even online. It is worth noting that many other property owners will be attempting to do the same, so this may take some time. Once an adjuster visits the property and assesses the damage, they will either accept or deny the claim. If they accept the claim they will make a cash offer for the value of the items lost. It is important to be cautious about this offer; once accepted the claim is closed and a policyholder cannot attempt to collect again.
Options for Rejecting an Offer or Fighting a Claim Denial
At their core, all insurance disputes are contract disputes. This is because the insurance company and the policyholder enter into a contract where the policyholder pays the insurance company in exchange for protection against a loss of property. This means that a policyholder can ask a court to enforce a contract when an insurance company denies a claim.
The reason for the denial is irrelevant. If an insurance company denies a claim because they argue that the policy does not cover flood damage for example, a policyholder may interpret their policy differently. This dispute is exactly the type of case that a civil court has jurisdiction to hear. An attorney could help North Carolina individuals who have suffered property loss due to Hurricane Florence examine their North Carolina Hurricane Florence insurance claim denials and pursue lawsuits to collect payment.
An Attorney Can Help After a Hurricane Florence Insurance Claim Denial
Insurance companies make their profits by denying claims. Even after large catastrophes such as Hurricane Florence, a company will not provide payment if they do not believe that the damage is covered by their policy. While many of these North Carolina hurricane Florence insurance claim denials are based on an honest disagreement as to the protections provided by the policy, this is of no comfort to people who have lost their homes or businesses.
An attorney could help people who received a denial for their property losses. They can work to understand the reason for the denial, examine the language present in the policy, and evaluate a person’s legal options going forward. Contact an attorney today to learn more.