A home is likely one of the most valuable assets a family will own, and a single storm, house fire, or sinkhole can cause massive damage. It can feel like you have no rights or recourse when dealing with the insurance company to get the money you deserve. The good news is that Florida civil laws protect your rights when dealing with your insurer.
In this post, a Miami property damage lawyer shares what legal rights an insured has after a loss in Florida:
Florida Laws Protect the Insured After a Loss
Per Fla. Stat. § 627.7174, your insurer must provide you with a Bill of Rights within fourteen (14) days of receiving notification of your claim. It defines your rights and the insurance company’s obligations regarding your claim, including:
Right 1. Prompt Acknowledgments
Your property insurance company must acknowledge receipt of your claim within fourteen (14) days of submission. However, the law is silent on how the insurer must handle this process. Request written acknowledgment of your claim and follow up with the insurance company if you do not receive a response within two weeks.
Right 2. Timely Updates
If you make a written request, your insurance company must inform you of the status of your claim within thirty (30) days of receiving a complete proof-of-loss statement. The company can confirm whether the claim will be paid in full, partially covered, denied, or under investigation.
Right 3. Reasonable Response Times
You also have a legal right to receive full or partial payment or claim denial within ninety (90) days. This rule aligns with the duty to pay or deny claims in a timely manner so that the homeowner doesn’t unnecessarily incur more damages.
Right 4. No-Cost Mediations for Disputes
The Department of Financial Services provides mediation services. You may qualify for no-cost mediation should a dispute arise. Please remember that mediation is a non-binding process, and the insurance company is not obligated to follow the mediator’s recommendations.
Right 5. Neutral Assessment Access
If your claim involves sinkhole activity, you may qualify for an assessment via a non-binding neutral evaluation requested in writing. Requesting a neutral assessment may have a detrimental effect on the litigation process. You should always seek legal advice from a property damage lawyer when navigating this process.
Related Article: What Are an Insured’s Duties After an Accident or Loss?
Get Trusted Legal Advice After a Loss
Navigating the claims process after property damage is always challenging. That’s why many homeowners choose to lean on the knowledge and experience of a property damage lawyer in Miami, Florida at The Innocent Law Firm.