Making a home insurance claim is never an easy thing to do. It means that something has gone wrong, and there’s moderate to considerable damage to your home. Whether it’s a fallen tree after a wind storm, an electrical fire, or damage from a natural disaster, rebuilding can be expensive, and you need to make sure your insurance claim covers as much of the damage as possible.
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In the case of a major claim, filing it on your own may not be the best way to proceed. But you don’t have to do it alone. You can get help making a claim on your home insurance fire coverage from a public insurance adjuster or a lawyer. Before you proceed, learn about the difference between an insurance adjuster and lawyer, and find out who can provide the assistance you need.
What Is an Insurance Adjuster?
The first time you encounter an insurance adjuster, they will either be an independent third-party hired by the insurance company or a direct employee. It’s their job to evaluate your claim, including the extent of the damage to your home. They will tell the insurance company how much they should offer you.
You don’t have to agree with everything the adjuster says. You can negotiate if you feel that they have missed essential repairs or undervalued your belongings, but it helps if you have a professional who understands insurance claims and contract law to back up your argument.
A public adjuster will evaluate property loss on your behalf. They work for you, and you pay their fee, unlike the adjuster hired by the insurer.
Should You Hire an Insurance Lawyer?
In some cases, it makes more sense to hire an insurance lawyer. For example, if you have experienced a total loss and your claim is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, any attempt by the insurance company to curtail their own expenses would cost your family considerable sums of money.
If you are struggling to get timely communications or actions from the insurer, a lawyer can also help. They can also be effective at negotiating when you need to dispute the value of your claim because the insurer has undervalued the repairs or your belongings. In cases where a third party is at fault or fault is difficult to determine, a lawyer may be able to provide more assistance than a public adjuster.
An insurance lawyer brings a wealth of legal knowledge and understanding of contracts that an adjuster will not. They have all the knowledge and skills needed to complete the same appraisal process that an adjuster can, but they are also familiar with the loopholes and areas of concern that your insurer may take advantage of.
Insurance lawyers can also lessen the stress you have during the claims process. There is a mountain of paperwork to complete, not to mention complex legal language. An insurance lawyer can help you focus on your family and your recovery while they take care of your claim.