When to Hire a Property Insurance Attorney
Dealing with property damage can be a stressful and overwhelming experience for any homeowner or business owner. When disaster strikes, it is important to have insurance coverage to help cover the cost of repairs and restoration. In this article, we will discuss the situations in which hiring a property insurance attorney may be necessary and how they can help you navigate the insurance claims process.
When to Contact a Lawyer about a Property Insurance Claim
While many property insurance policies cover damage to the property, contents, and business interruption losses, an insurance company may still act in bad faith to avoid paying out these coverages. This is just the first of several examples of when a policyholder is best off contacting a property insurance attorney to help them with their claim. Examples of bad faith include when an insurance company:
- Offers or makes an unreasonably low payment
- Denies a valid claim
- Attempts to falsely blame the insured during communications
- Refuses to pay a claim in a timely manner
- Threatens or intimidates the insured
- Drops communications in the middle of claim processing
An insurance policy is a contract between the policyholder and the insurance company. It is what the legal world calls a contract of adhesion, a legally binding contract between two parties where one party has a disproportionate amount of power over the other.
In truth, the policyholder of an insurance policy almost has no bargaining power in their dealings with their insurance company besides being able to decide which insurance company to select and which policy to select. Besides those items, all an insured can do when presented with a policy is choose to sign or not sign on the dotted line. However, despite the seemingly unfair nature of insurance policies, they remain contracts, and all contracts contain an implied duty of good faith and fair dealing that requires neither party to act in a way that will destroy or injure the contractual rights of the other party.
If you believe that this duty of good faith, or the contract in general, has been breached by your insurance carrier, it’s time to hire a commercial insurance attorney. Another reason to hire an attorney to help with your claim is if you have a large case and think the lawyer will be able to handle it more skillfully or more professionally, which will likely lead to a greater monetary award in your case.
The value of your time is another reason to hire a property insurance attorney. After all, property insurance attorneys do this every day for a living. If your time is better spent working, caring for your family, or earning money outside of a lengthy claims battle, you should consider hiring a lawyer.
Also, hiring a property insurance attorney can be essential in cases where there is an enormous claim amount, where the fault is difficult to explain or prove, or where there is a substantial difference in the amount you want and what the insurance company has countered with. If you have a complex case, you may want a lawyer to review your policy before you file a claim with your insurance carrier. An attorney can help you understand the legal jargon and technicalities that may impact your claim payout.
What Type of Property Insurance Attorney Should I Hire (and Tips for Choosing One)
When seeking the right property insurance attorney, experts recommend choosing an attorney specifically well-versed in insurance claims rather than a general practitioner or someone who considers themselves a ‘jack of all trades.’
Friends, family, and work colleagues are always a great place to start when seeking a referral. If they have worked with any type of lawyer, they may be able to recommend someone who deals with the pursuit of insurance claims payouts through settlement and/or through litigation where necessary.
When doing your homework on a potential hire for an insurance claims attorney, some questions to consider include:
- How long has the lawyer been licensed by their state of practice?
- Is their law license active?
- Does their law license have any discipline on it, and what kind?
- How are the attorney’s reviews?
- Does the lawyer work directly with clients or pass the clients off to their “team?”
- When you call the office, does the person who answers behave in a manner that displays courtesy, professionalism, and respect toward you and your case?
Boost Your Chances of Success with MMA Law Firm
As property insurance attorneys who help clients interpret insurance policies, understand their rights, and recover their losses every day, the attorneys at MMA Law Firm are well-positioned to assist clients with flood insurance claims in the State of Texas. Contact one of our property insurance attorneys today so that we can help you.
This blog published by MMA Law Firm is available for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice on any subject matter. The content available on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information.