Florida Property Damage Claims: What You Need to Know About Initial Settlement Offers
In the event that you are forced to make a property damage claim for your Florida home, you will be protected by the state’s Homeowner Claims Bill of Rights. This statute provides critical legal protections for property owners. It also puts many obligations on insurance companies. For example, in Florida all insurers have a legal duty to act in good faith. As such, homeowners fairly expect that their property insurance claims will be paid at full value, without any undue delay. Unfortunately, as is often the case, the real world is far more complicated. In many cases, an insurance company’s initial settlement offer will not in fact cover the full extent of your property damage. If this happened in your case, you are not out luck. You should keep fighting for the full recovery you deserve.
The Insurance Company Wants to Limit Your Settlement Offer
Ultimately, the big insurance companies are in this business to make money. Of course, if they can systematically limit settlement payouts to an amount that is less than the full and fair value, their profits will increase. At the same time, these companies do understand that claimants are legally entitled to the maximum recovery possible under the terms of the property insurance policies. Further, Florida law requires that insurance companies always deal fairly with claimants and refrain from using any bad faith settlement practices. Still, you can be sure that insurance companies have performed extensive research into discovering tactics that will help them limit settlement payouts while still staying in the bounds of Florida law. Specifically, insurers know that many people will simply accept the initial settlement offer put forth by the company without challenging it. This is true for two reasons: 1) Many claimants do not realize that they could be entitled to more money; and 2) some claimants do realize it, but feel that seeking what they deserve will be too much of a hassle.
Do Not Accept an Unfair Initial Settlement Offer
You should only accept a settlement offer that pays you every penny that you are owed under the terms of your property insurance policies. If the company’s initial offer covers the full extent of your losses, that is great news. You can feel confident accepting that offer and getting your property repaired. However, if the offer is less than you believe you deserve, please remember that you have legal options. Do not let this process stress you. You need to look into your policy so that you can figure out exactly what you are actually owed. Remember, you paid the full cost of your monthly premiums; and, as such, the insurance company owes you a full and fair settlement offer in return.
Contact Our Office Today
If you believe that your insurance company has offered you less than you deserve, the Fort Lauderdale property insurance dispute lawyers at Geyer Fuxa Tyler are ready to help. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our team today to set up a risk-free review of your claim. We represent policyholders throughout Broward County, including in Hollywood and Deerfield Beach.