Preparing for a Flood Insurance Claim

J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo
Founder of J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo, P.A.

Floods can cause devastating damage to your home and the contents within your home.  If you have only standard homeowner's coverage, your loss from flooding will not be covered.  Although many forms of water damage are covered by most homeowner's policies, flood insurance must be purchased as separate coverage.  In some cases, flood insurance might be provided for an additional premium by your homeowner's carrier under the "Write Your Own Program" which allows participating property and casualty insurance carriers to write and service the Standard Flood Insurance Policy.

If you live in Miami or other coastal areas of Florida, you should take certain steps to prepare for the possibility of flood.  Preparation to prevent future flood losses starts with meticulous record keeping.  When you submit a flood damage claim, you can expect your insurance carrier to demand receipts for every item of property that is damaged or destroyed.  If you pursue a property damage claim following a flood, the insurer also frequently asks for any receipts or invoices for repairs performed following prior flood damage.  The insurance company also might request records indicating that work paid for by insurance after a prior flood was actually performed.

The preservation of receipts, contractor records and other relevant documents in a safe place prior to a flood is important because failure to do so might mean the records are part of the collateral damage during the flood.  The water from a flood that causes property damage is usually the same water damage that makes critical records used to prove loss unavailable.  If you do not have receipts for certain items, sometimes you might be able to obtain proof of the cost or value of the item by contacting the store where you purchased the product or the manufacturer of the item.  If you try to gather this information following a flood many years after purchasing the item, you may not be able to get receipts from the vendors.  It also is possible that manufacturers, stores, and contractors may close their doors.

Flood coverage represents the ultimate in insurance paradoxes.  While there are thousands of policyholders with flood insurance, many people do not understand how flood insurance policies work.  Although the Federal Flood Insurance Program might not be particularly popular, people would not have flood insurance without the program.

Advances in technology provide a convenient strategy for safeguarding documents and information in the event you need to make a future flood claim.  Many services offer off-sight data storage or cloud storage, so the information is secure but readily available when you need it to identify and establish the value of your lost property.  

You can reach Miami Insurance Claims Lawyer J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo by dialing his direct number at (786) 272-5841, calling the main office at (305) 461-1095, or Toll Free at 1 (866) 71-CLAIM or email Attorney Gonzalez-Sirgo directly at [email protected].

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