Property Damage Attorney in Fort Lauderdale
Owning a home is a proud moment. As part of the American dream, millions of homes are purchased each year throughout the county. In Northeast Florida, the 2019 market showed an increase of 5.4% in home sales, with more than 31,000 properties sold.
Unfortunately, the benefits of owning a home come with its share of problems as well. Maintenance costs, real estate taxes, and repairs cost homeowners thousands of dollars each year. And in Florida, many of the required repairs occur following unanticipated storms. From hurricanes to flooding, Florida is prone to unpredictable weather, and more and more homes are damaged as a result.
Each year, 5% of homeowners file a claim with their insurance company. 98% of these claims are for property damage of some kind, and the average claim in the U.S. is for over $12,000. Florida is the third most expensive state for homeowner’s insurance coverage, with an average cost of almost $2,000 each year.
If your home was affected by a storm or was otherwise damaged and requires repairs, a property damage attorney in Fort Lauderdale can help. Even when your insurance company is willing to settle a claim, a property damage lawyer can help to ensure that your best interests are in mind. An experienced property damage attorney understands how important your home is, and will work hard to get you enough compensation to make your house a home again.
Different Causes of Harm in Fort Lauderdale
There are several different reasons why a home might require repairs. Some examples include:
- Plumbing Issues
- A/C Issues
- Strong winds
- Mold and mildew
In addition to damage to property, theft can cause damage to windows, doors, and locks that require compensation to repair the damage.
Severe weather is another major cause of property damage, especially in Florida. Hurricanes are more frequent here than almost any other state. Hurricanes can produce strong winds, heavy rain, flooding, and mold and mildew issues. According to the Insurance Information Institute, Florida accounted for six of the ten costliest hurricanes in the U.S., with four storms occurring between 2004 and 2005 alone. Hurricane Andrew was the most expensive hurricane in U.S. history and caused over $25 billion in harm.
Unfortunately, not all types of property damage are covered under a standard insurance policy. Specific flood insurance is generally required to protect a homeowner from harm caused by flooding. In areas that are prone to flooding, some companies may not offer this additional coverage, making it difficult for a property owner to protect themselves in the event that their property is inundated with water. Fortunately, the U.S. government offers insurance programs for areas in Florida that are susceptible to flooding. Even with a government flood insurance policy, a property damage attorney can help ensure that adequate compensation is provided following a flood.
With so many causes of property damage, it’s not surprising that so many homeowners have to file claims with their insurance company. A personal property damage lawyer can help. A Fort Lauderdale property damage lawyer can help ensure that all deadlines are met, that your property is properly inspected following any damage, and that any compensation for repairs will adequately cover the costs to fix them. Call today for a consultation.
Why do I need an Attorney?
After a property has been damaged, it is important to let your insurance company know that the property was damaged. Initiating a claim is the first step in receiving compensation. Once a claim is started, your insurance company will send out an adjuster to gather information about the damage and present the homeowner with an estimate to repair the damage. The insurance company will use this estimate to determine how much to pay out in a settlement.
Certainly, a homeowner can accept an insurance settlement with no questions asked and without the help of an attorney. However, more often than not an initial settlement is inadequate to properly repair any harm made to your property. Insurance adjusters work for the insurance company and will write up their estimate with the company’s best interests in mind. While not all estimates are inaccurate, it is in the homeowner’s best interest to get additional estimates for the damage.
A property damage attorney can assist with getting these additional estimates. Often a contractor will charge to write up an estimate for any repairs the property needs. When a homeowner hires an attorney, an attorney can often pay for these estimates out of pocket and have these costs reimbursed after you receive a settlement from your insurance company.
Additionally, a property damage lawyer can work directly with the insurance company to help ensure that you get as much compensation as possible. Following a damage claim, the insurance company, or even the adjuster, may overlook damage related to the claim. A Fort Lauderdale attorney can work hard to ensure that these costs are not overlooked and are indeed included in any settlement.
How We Handle Cases
- Your attorney will aggressively investigate your case. Schlacter Law will compile all necessary evidence needed to maximize the value of your case. Which includes but is not limited to photographs, police reports, security camera footage, witness statements, medical bills and medical records.
- You will remain in constant contact with Schlacter Law about the progression of your case.
- Your attorney will present your case to the insurance company and will attempt to resolve your case before the case goes to court for maximum compensation.
- Your attorney will make every effort possible to resolve the case as quickly as possible for the most amount of money you may be entitled to. You will be actively involved in the negotiation process with your attorney. Schlacter Law understands that this is your one opportunity to get justice for your loss.
- If settlement negotiations are unsuccessful, Schlacter Law will be fully prepared to bring your case to court to fight for the justice you deserve.
- At no cost to you, Schlacter Law will hire any experts and professionals needed to maximize your recovery and present your case in the strongest form possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
How does my lawyer get paid?
A lawyer would get paid through a contingency fee where they only get paid when they successfully get compensation on your behalf.
Can I negotiate with insurance companies on my own?
While an attorney is not required, an experienced attorney understands the hidden issues that can be easily overlooked. With years of knowledge gained by working with insurance companies, you can be sure that an attorney will work hard to get you as much compensation as possible. Call us today for a consultation.
What if I have a Public Adjuster?
Even if you have a Public Adjuster, you can hire Schlacter Law to work with your Public Adjuster to present your case to court. In most instances, our fees get paid by the insurance company directly if the case is resolved successfully.