Using Your Coverage: Filing An Insurance Claim After Hurricane Irma
Hurricane Irma is now a memory, but evidence of her visit to Florida is still very much apparent. The entire greater Polk County area suffered extensive damage, and homes and businesses throughout the central portion of our state were damaged, or destroyed, by fierce winds and heavy rains. Flooding, downed trees, and flying debris added even more damages to many properties, and the result is thousands of people clamoring to file insurance claims to take care of their homes and properties.
Chances are, this could be your first time filing an insurance claim post-hurricane, and it can differ (in some policies) from basic home repair claims. Hurricanes are a large-scale disaster, and they often leave you with multiple damages to file. There are a few tips we’d like to share to make the process easier:
- File ASAP. The sooner your file with your insurance company, the better. Claims that are made weeks or months after the hurricane might not be covered, especially if you don’t have concrete proof that the damages were a direct effect of the storm, and not something that happened afterward. Additionally, insurance companies will be flooded with claims in the coming weeks, and they are usually handled on a first come, first serve basis. Getting your claim in now means you are more likely to have repairs and replacements for your home faster.
- Your claim number is your “Insurance ID”. Once you file your claim, write down the claim number you are given and keep it safe. You’ll need this continually through the filing process, so until your repairs are signed off on and completed, keep that number handy!
- Stay organized. There is a LOT of paperwork involved with filing claims after a hurricane, especially if you had extensive damages. Keep all receipts, claim forms, quotes from contractors, hotel expenses, etc. in a singular location, where they can be accessed easily and referred to as needed. A file folder or a plastic bin is a great way to keep track of your papers and make sure you’re on top of the claims process from start to finish.
If you are preparing to make your insurance claim after Irma, and are still unsure of where to start, Carroll Marshall Insurance is here for you. We are reading and waiting to answer your questions and walk you through the process of getting back to life after Irma. Give us a call or stop by our Winter Haven office to get started.