How Long Does a Home Insurance Claim Take in Texas?
If your house was damaged by fire, hail, a storm, or any other type of disaster, you need money to get it fixed as quickly as possible. Insurance companies have stringent rules on when you should pay your premium but don’t use the same standards in a reverse situation when they’re the ones who have to pay you. The Texas Department of Insurance regulates the insurance claim process, but insurers don’t always follow the rules. When this happens, you should always seek counsel from an experienced Houston insurance claim lawyer, as you may have the right to receive interest if your claim is not paid on time.
What are the Time Limits the Insurance Company Must Respect?
According to the law, once you notify them of the loss, the company has 15 days to acknowledge receiving your claim and start investigating it. After that, the company will send an adjuster to evaluate the damages to your house. If a natural disaster hit the area, the insurance company will be flooded with claims, and it might take them longer to send an adjuster to your house.
At the same time, you will be required to submit proof of loss, a repair cost estimate, and a list of the items damaged by the covered event. If the company keeps asking for extra documents or changing the adjuster in charge of your case, they might be using delay tactics. The only thing you can do is have your Houston homeowners insurance attorney give them a call.
Once you’ve submitted the required documentation, the company has 15 days to accept or deny your claim. The insurance company has the right to extend the response period to 45 days, provided they offer a reasonable explanation of why the delay is necessary. For example, if the insurer suspects arson, they have 30 days to accept or deny your claim.
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How Soon Will I Get My Insurance Money?
How long does a home insurance claim take? The insurance company must pay your claim within five days. If they don’t, there may be a reasonable explanation for the delay, but if they’re simply stalling, your lawyers will remind them they’ll have to pay interest on that money. That might speed things up a bit. On the other hand, if the company rejects your claim, wait for the denial letter and take it to your lawyers immediately. If your attorneys find the denial unjustified, you have the right to appeal the decision.
Home Insurance Claims Timeline – Important Deadlines
In many cases, time limits for filing claims have more to do with the language of your insurance policy – essentially a contract between you and the insurance company – than state laws. However, in the State of Texas, there is help for insureds in the form of Texas home insurance laws. More specifically, §542.056 of the Texas Code controls the timeframe for insurance companies to respond to a claimant once they submit a claim.
So just how long do home insurance claims take? And how long can a home insurance claim stay open? If you suffer damage or a large loss, you should check your policy for the deadlines for how long you have to file a claim. Note that this is the big-picture deadline, and there may also be multiple smaller deadlines, like deadlines for submitting certain documents. Learn more about insurance claim timelines.
Notifying Your Insurance Provider of the Loss
Most insurance policies require notice either promptly or within a specific set timeframe. In any event, it is recommended to notify the insurer as soon as you become aware of a loss. Insurance companies will often try to keep homeowners from getting money from an insurance claim if the delay becomes too long. They may say that they have been “prejudiced” by the homeowner’s delay and that it would be unfair for the insurance company to be forced to address the claim since so much time has passed.
Claims for such incidents as natural disasters, storms, and similar losses may have multiple specific deadlines for filing documents, such as estimates and inventories of losses. Therefore, it is pivotal to check the insurance policy for these and always recommended to do so with the help of a knowledgeable Houston insurance attorney.
Disputing the Claim or Getting Legal Help
Promptness and sufficient detail are vital in winning an insurance claim. Additionally, it is crucial to do all things practical and possible to mitigate consequential losses from occurring while the insurance claim is processed, for example, making temporary repairs. Understanding your obligations in this regard and understanding what to do and not do while waiting for a resolution from the insurance company, comes from a close reading of the insurance policy.
Does the Type of Damage Matter?
Generally speaking, damage from incidents like tornadoes, hurricanes, other wind damage, fire, and freezing precipitation can be reported within a year, but again, you must review your policy. Some policies have different deadlines for different types of disasters, and there are rarely one size fits all approaches in insurance policies.
Speak to the water damage attorneys and hail damage lawyers at MMA to learn more about insurance claims for mold damage.
Suspect Bad Faith Insurance Practices? Contact MMA Today.
As professionals who help clients interpret contracts, understand their rights and recover on their losses every day, the attorneys at McClenny Moseley & Associates are well positioned to protect clients against bad faith insurance practices and insurance adjuster tricks. We’ll do our best to ensure that insurance claims are processed in the proper and legally required timeframe. Contact us today so that we can help you.