With frequent threats of rising rivers and storms in the springtime, and Hurricanes in the summer, Louisiana residents are often faced with making flood insurance claims. There are several steps you can take to improve your chances of making a successful claim. The first step is to make sure you purchase a separate flood insurance policy well before the flood occurs. Most Homeowners’ policies do not cover flood damage.
If your home or business is flooded, immediately report the flood insurance claim to your insurance agent. The claim will be assigned to a flood adjuster who will meet with you at the property.
Your official claim for damages is called a Proof of Loss. The Proof of Loss must be fully completed, signed and in the hands of your insurance company within 60 days after the loss occurs.
You are responsible for making sure the Proof of Loss is accurately completed and timely filed. FEMA may offer a Proof of Loss extension in cases of severe flooding in your area. Extensions of time to file will be posted on the FEMA website and announced by the news media.
To prove the insurance company has received the Proof of Loss, you should probably mail it U.S. Certified Mail-Return Receipt Requested. Of course, keep a copy of the Proof of Loss and supporting documents for your records.
To support your claim for flood damage, be sure to photograph and/or videotape both the inside and outside of the premises (both structure and content) to show any damage, flooding and any evidence of the height of the water.
When preparing to make structural damage repairs, make sure to obtain estimates by competent, qualified licensed contractors. On your contents claim, don’t guess the value or quantity of your contents. Use the photographs to refresh your memory and to help thoroughly itemize the requested information on your content list.
If you need help with preparing your flood insurance claim, your supplement claim or with filing a lawsuit against your flood insurer, please call me at 866-558-9151 or submit your inquiry online. Please be advised that you may be facing important legal deadlines so don’t delay.
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