When it comes to homeowners insurance, there’s one mistake that looms larger than all the rest: not having homeowners insurance at all. Most mortgage lenders will require you to insure your property, but even if you pay for your house in cash, having a homeowners policy can be a smart way to safeguard against potential catastrophe, including fire, theft, or natural disaster.
If you have a homeowner policy, and if you do sustain some form of property damage that’s covered under your policy, you may want to consider filing a claim. Here, it’s important to proceed carefully, as there are some common errors that can compromise your claim and keep you from getting the compensation you need.
The following are just a few of the homeowner insurance claims errors that our attorneys have encountered. If you have specific questions about any of these, please don’t hesitate to contact McLaurin Law directly.
COMMON ERRORS WITH HOMEOWNERS CLAIMS
- Not supplying enough documentation. When you submit a claim to your insurance company, you should always back it up with as much information as possible. Provide all the documents showing that you really have incurred property damage or loss, and that it really is severe. Some insurance adjusters may request a police report if criminal activity caused your damages. Take photos of the damage and attach them to your claim. Be detailed in your account of what happened. If you’re asking for an item to be replaced or repaired, make sure to include the invoice, receipt, or quote.
- Delaying your claim. Generally speaking, it is best to file an insurance claim as promptly as possible. If you wait too long before contacting your insurance agent or company, you increase the risk of the claim being denied. You should always avoid procrastinating during the claims process.
- Not knowing the terms of your policy. Not all homeowner insurance policies are created equal, and it is a mistake to make your claim without taking the time to review what is and is not covered under your policy. If you have specific questions about the details of your homeowners insurance policy, reach out to one of the attorneys at McLaurin Law and we’d be happy to advise.
- Accepting your claim’s denial. It’s all too common to have your homeowners insurance company deny your claim but remember, you don’t have to take no for an answer. You can appeal the claim or coverage denial, and/or take legal action against the insurance carrier. Depending on the claim, you may be able to recover your reasonable attorney fees from the insurance carrier if your lawsuit is successful.
Keep these guidelines in mind as you prepare your homeowners insurance claim. If you have any questions or need assistance handling your claim, feel free to contact McLaurin Law now. We specialize in insurance claims and disputes in Texas, particularly in the Harris County and Houston area.
Jason McLaurin is a founding member of McLaurin Law. He has over a decade of experience representing clients at trial, arbitration, and mediation in matters concerning insurance policyholder recovery disputes, complex commercial litigation, and catastrophic personal injury claims. He also represents businesses as outside general counsel for clients in a variety of industries including construction, oil and gas, maritime, technology, and professional services. He is licensed and handles matters in both Texas and Louisiana.