Florida Property Insurance: Interior Water Damage Caused By “Wind Driven Rain”
In general, a standard homeowners insurance policy will not offer coverage for flood damage. That type of coverage must be obtained by purchasing a separate policy. Of course, floods are not the only way that homes sustain serious interior water damage due to a storm. What happens when your interior water damage is caused by “wind driven rain”?
This is a complicated question. If your interior water damage was not caused by a flood, coverage cannot be excluded on those grounds alone. Though, your insurer may still try to reject your claim. In fact, storm-related interior water damage claims often end up in disputes. Unfortunately, the big insurance companies are overly aggressive in denying these types of claims. Here, our Broward County property insurance dispute lawyers highlight three things you need to do to obtain coverage for your storm-related interior water damage.
- Carefully Review the Policy Language
Should you be required to make a water damage claim, the language of your insurance policy will largely control the issue. While this is true in all property insurance cases, it is especially important in cases involving interior water damage caused by wind driven rain. Many insurance companies around the country have started to draft policy language that attempts to exclude this type of loss in some cases. For example, your policy may contain language that is similar to the following:
- This policy excludes coverage for interior water damage caused by rain, unless the damage occurred as a direct result of wind or hail hitting the structure.
Insurance companies can be very aggressive when applying that type of language to a real world case, denying many valid claims. The bottom line: The language of your policy matters. Read it carefully to ensure that you have the right coverage and so that you know what you need to do to effectively bring an interior water damage claim.
- Thoroughly Document Your Losses
Once interior water damage occurs, the best thing that you can do to protect yourself is to very thoroughly secure any and all evidence related to your loss. This means taking pictures, gathering records, making detailed contemporaneous notes and doing everything else you can think of to create a chain of evidence that can be used to prove the true cause of your damages and the value of your losses.
- Be Ready for a Dispute
Finally, when it comes to weather-caused interior water damage claims, you need to be ready for a dispute from the insurance company. Ideally, your insurer will pay out your claim without any undue delay. Unfortunately, that is not always how it happens. If you begin to run into trouble from the insurance company, particularly if they say that your loss is excluded from coverage, you need to seek professional assistance as soon as possible.
Was Your Water Damage Insurance Claim Denied?
Our Fort Lauderdale property insurance dispute attorneys can help. At Geyer Fuxa Tyler, we have considerable experience handling all types of water damage claims. To learn more about what our firm can do to help you, please call us today at (954) 990-5251 to request a free, no obligation review of your property insurance claim.