Each client is different and has different needs for their protection and budget. The worst part of my job is explaining at the time of a claim that you don’t have a coverage for something that is important to you! So please review and ask any questions before a claim arises. After a claim, it is too late to add or adjust coverage for that loss.
Below are some of the most common insurance claim issues.
- Not having enough liability limits. The state of NC only requires $30,000 per person and $60,000 each accident and $25,000 property damage. These limits can be used up quickly and if you are in a serious claim the other party can sue you personally. You want to make sure you have enough coverage to protect your assets and even consider a personal umbrella policy.
- Not being aware that your deductible applies for a glass claim. If you carry a $500 deductible for comprehensive, most windshields will be less than that. To have full glass coverage you want to have a $0 deductible.
- Not listing all drivers on the policy. A claim can be denied due to an unlisted driver or any other material misrepresentation. It is important to make sure all drivers are listed on your policy.
- Not having optional coverage’s such as medical payments, rental or towing coverage.
Click here for an easy to read and understand explanation of the auto policy and what each coverage means provided by the NC Department of Insurance.
- Not having a flood policy to cover a flood as your home policy excludes floods.
- Not being aware that certain items have limits on the amount of coverage provided and would need to be scheduled to get higher limits. Items such as jewelry, furs, cameras, musical instruments, silverware, fine arts, and golfer’s equipment.
- Not having certain optional endorsements on your policy like water back up or special computer coverage. You can read a list of the most common policy endorsement by clicking here.
- Not having an inventory of your personal belongings in the event of a claim. Having an inventory will ensure you have the proper amount of coverage. Click here for a free app to document and track your items which will be very helpful at the time of a claim.
Click here for an easy to read and understand explanation of the home policy and what each coverage means provided by the NC Department of Insurance.
Click here to visit our agency customer service center to view your insurance policies, your coverage limits, print insurance ID cards, claims and payment phone numbers, update your contact information, download documents, and more.
If you would like to review your policy or make any changes to your coverage, please contact us today.
Hurricanes can be scary–and, for some of you, homeowners policy documents might look even scarier! What happens AFTER a hurricane? What’s covered under your policy? When are you NOT covered?
In the event of temporary or permanent relocation due to damages inflicted by a hurricane, you may be entitled to Additional Living Expense coverage. However, insurance companies only grant this type of coverage in certain situations. The inflicted damages must be covered damages, such as wind damage, and the home must be inhabitable. From there, your insurance company will determine the minimum amount of time required to repair or replace the damaged property, as well as the amount of funds necessary for your household to maintain a normal standard of living.
The items that fall under Additional Living Expense coverage include, but may not be limited to:
- Increased housing costs (ex. staying in a hotel, renting a property)
- Furniture rentals for a temporary residence
- Increased cost to board pets
- Increased meal expenses from having to eat out
Note: Be sure to keep your receipts! In order to take advantage of this coverage in the event of hurricane damage, you will be need to show documentation for the amounts being claimed.
So, in what situations could YOU be covered?
Am I covered if…
- I went somewhere to wait out the storm? No, unless damage from a covered cause of loss was the reason for evacuating your home.
- I went somewhere to wait out the storm, and returned to find my home damaged and uninhabitable? Yes, from the time your home sustained damages (covered under a homeowners policy) that made it uninhabitable, additional living expense is covered.
- I am under mandatory evacuation, even though there is no damage in the area? No, unless damage to neighboring areas was the reason for mandatory evacuation.
- I am not allowed to return home due to damage in neighboring areas? Yes, if civil authority prohibits access to your home due to the conditions of surrounding areas, you will be covered up to a maximum of two weeks.
- I have no power or water because to outages due to the hurricane? No, there must be direct damage to your home to be covered.
- the food in my refrigerator and freezer spoil due to loss of power? No, as this is considered an “indirect damage.” Only direct damages to contents will result in coverage.
- my trees and plants are affected by the storm? No.
- I need to remove debris of downed trees from my property? It depends. If a tree falls in the yard, it must either inflict damage on a covered structure or restrict access to the property for removal to be a covered expense.
- there is flood damage? No, damage caused by flooding is specifically excluded from a homeowners policy. You must have a flood carrier to be covered in the case of damage caused by flooding.
As a final reminder, all hurricane claims will be unique, and there is no way to determine exactly how much coverage you’ll receive in the event of damage to your property. If there is a loss due to a hurricane, notify your insurance company immediately, and an adjuster will work with you on the unique circumstances of the loss. In the meantime, if you live on or near the coast, become familiar with your policy’s coverage limits in the event of a hurricane. Taking the time to understand this crucial part of your homeowners policy may offer some peace of mind in the unfortunate event of a hurricane or wind-related weather condition.