Bad things sometimes happen to good people… and good people’s property. Living in Florida, we’re susceptible to hurricanes, floods, tornados, and sink holes – and those are just the natural disasters. We also interact with bad drivers, bad neighbors, and just bad people. And when our property, whether our home, boat, RV, or car, takes the brunt of these interactions, we have to figure out how to fix it. Normally, we turn to our insurance, and our insurance is supposed to fix it or write us a check to fix it or replace it, right? Well, yes… however, it often comes with hoops to jump through and loop holes to avoid – that where Carpenter Gandhi can help. The attorneys at Carpenter Gandhi are equipped to help you navigate the myriad of paperwork and adjusters to help you get most for your claim.
Won’t getting an attorney involved just make things more complicated?
The short answer is no; in fact, it may help you cut through some red tape so we can get to speaking with the right person to investigate and focus on your claim. It is logical to think that the insurance company will look at you getting a lawyer as if you have something to hide, but the adjusters have been around a long time and understand that lawyers play a vital role in helping people navigate the insurance system.
What documentation will I need for a claim?
Of course, it depends on the property and the extent of the claim, but the more evidence, the better. Values are difficult to ascertain, so if you have expensive and/or unique property that is covered, document it and store that in a safe place. It may seem paranoid, but you never know what might happen. Regarding the cause of the damage, again, more evidence is better than less. If you have photos or video, that’s great. Timing is key – report your claim as soon as it is damaged. Evidence disappears quickly, so it is best if the investigation can start immediately.
My insurance company wants something called a Statement Under Oath – what is that?
A Statement Under Oath is common in insurance claims. Similar to a deposition in litigation, you will appear before a court reporter and you will be asked questions under oath (most likely by an attorney). While this is common practice, you should be aware that your statements are being placed under oath and a misstep here could be harmful to your claim. Just like a deposition, what you say matters, so make sure you understand all of the questions you are being asked.
How am I going to pay for my property if I’m paying an attorney?
This is a common question, and for good reason. Many attorneys will take property claims on as a contingency so that you don’t have to put money in up front, but they will then charge 331/3% of recovery. In an effort to allow more access to an attorney and keep more claim money in your pockets, Carpenter Gandhi charges a reduced rate of 15% plus costs on all property damage matters.
If you have had property damaged, whether by weather or by another person, and you have questions as to your rights, contact Carpenter Gandhi to schedule a free consultation.