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Residential Wind & Flood

How to handle a residential insurance claim

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Our homes are not only the largest investment in our life, but it’s an emotional attachment to the memories and personal possessions that make up our lives. When damages happen to your home, your immediate obligations are to your family and employment. The last thing you want is to be confused by insurance carriers putting undue pressure on you. You should not need to make decisions for insurance purposes under duress. Garrett Claims Group has the experience and skill set to address the claim and read the fine print in your insurance policy. This enables homeowners to make sound decisions that are best for them. Homeowners should know their loss options and duties under the insurance policy. Taking the emotional attachment from the claim process is key to successfully navigating the claim process. Especially since the burden of proving the claim is not up to the insurance company.

Homeowners turn to Garrett Claims Group as a resource to ensure their policy benefits are received and interests are protected. Properly and accurately presenting damage claims is what we specialize in. It is not the insurance company’s duty to prove your damages. We make sure your claim value is being documented and presented properly. Meeting with insurance company representatives, experts and contractors is a necessary step in the process.

Check out our portfolio of successfully managed claims here.

FAPIA Bulletin Updates on Ban by Some Carriers From Using Public Adjusters

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On January 26, 2022, the Florida Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (FAPIA) issued a bulletin in response to recent action by Louisiana Insurance Commissioner, James J. Donelon. Donelon took a firm stance in support of policy holders in Louisiana by issuing a bulletin to insurers and surplus lines carriers. The bulletin prohibited potentially unconstitutional restrictions on policy holders from using public insurance adjusters.

We believe this stance protects the consumer’s rights and recognizes the critical role that public insurance adjusters play in the claims process. FAPIA indicated that it is hopeful that other states will take up similar stances on the role of public insurance adjusters. In fact, FAPIA will be presenting important updates on the subject on February 17, 2022 at 5:00pm. FAPIA’s lobby team will be virtually presenting important updates and Garrett Claims Group will be tuning in. Stay tuned for updates!

Garrett Claims Group belongs to the State Association of Public Insurance Adjusters and adheres to a strict Code of Ethics. Membership with FAPIA allows GCG to take advantage of the best quality continuing education training in the country. Additionally, GCG is able to draw upon a network of resources to best assist you in handling your insurance claim.

Read FAPIA’s bulletin by clicking HERE.

Read the Louisiana Directive HERE.

Do not sign away your rights!

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Many property owners contact us after they’ve signed away their rights to a contractor. That’s not always a bad thing, but for the most part it’s a disaster within a disaster. The insurance company may have their service providers contacting you, or you may get contacted via direct solicitation, whether it be a restoration contractor, roofer, water mitigation company or the alike. Please be careful about who you hire and the costs you incur. If you are in doubt – feel free to call us!

There has been a dramatic increase in service providers swooping in while policyholders are under duress. To an extent, we understand why property owners want to take them up on their offers – they want to stop the damages as soon as possible. But when a contract gets signed between a property owner and a contractor, without clarity on how much the insurance carrier will pay for damages, you could be in danger.

Here enters the problem – property owners want to be paid for the damages, but we do not recommend signing away your rights to the contractor – this hands over your policy benefits and insurance proceeds to the contractor. It could even wind up incurring expenses that were unnecessary. It’s your insurance policy and you should not entrust or rely upon unlicensed individuals to assist in the insurance claim process!

If you want to be in control of your insurance claim and receive payments for the damages, then be very careful about what you sign and know your obligations, when entering into contracts. Contractors are there to construct and rebuild, they are not licensed or in the business of insurance claims filing, negotiation, or settlements.

The Insurance Industry is Rapidly Changing

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The insurance industry is changing by the day. Here’s what you should know:

  • High deductibles=minimal claim payments
  • Signing an Assignment of Benefits (AOB) means no payment to you!
  • Restrictive Policy Language
  • More contractors soliciting as Insurance Specialists
    • Read the fine print

For over 35 years, Garrett Claims Group. has been helping policyholders “Weather the Storm”. Let us manage your claim to collect the insurance policy benefits you are owed.

  • Our Claim Professionals:
    • Are detailed estimators
    • Prepare elaborate claims presentations
    • Scheduling and corresponding with your insurance carrier
    • Are Alternative Dispute Experts
    • Negotiate on behalf of your interests
  • No Recovery = No Fee
  • Provide a complimentary claims analysis

As a commercial client in Central Florida stated from Hurricane Irma, ” Best choice… for very positive results”.

Garrett Claims Group’s philosophy is for you  to obtain the benefits you deserve. No less.

I’ve got an estimate, so I’m good, right?

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Writing an estimate is just one step in the claims process. Today’s technology has made everyone an acclaimed “expert”, but let’s really focus on the substantive issue – your property and recovery. Navigating the entire claims process takes skill, knowledge, professionalism and proper licensure.

The claims process is very complex. If claimants endeavor to handle the claim process themselves, they need an understanding the dynamics of each particular claim and how to address and present the issues from start to finish.

This is how Garrett Claims Group works for you:

  • Insurance Policy – No Problem, we got you covered!
    • What is Covered v. Not Covered?
      • Let us help you determine how it happened and the chain of events.
    • Conditions and Provisions?
      • We identity your duties v. the insurance company’s
  • Correspondence – we communicate with the insurance company on your behalf.
    • Are you going to take the time to document every aspect of your claim?
      • We are licensed and know the terms to properly communicate with your insurance company.
  • Site Inspections and Experts – Our Firm’s Wheelhouse!
    • Who is going to coordinate and provide access for the entire investigation process?
    • Who is going to respond or assist with all the insurance company’s questions?
  • Loss Presentation and Negotiation – We Excel!
    • Valuation is very important, but the ability to professionally develop, substantiate and present a claim takes a seasoned professional.
    • Understanding your loss settlement options.

We want you to be prepared following any claim event.  Garrett Claims Group offers Pre-Loss Inspections and policy review at no charge or obligation. Contact us today with any comments or questions.

Public Adjuster - Insurance Adjuster - Panama City - FL

Be careful not to sign away your rights…

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Time and again property owners contact us after they’ve signed away their rights to a contractor. That’s not always a bad thing, but for the most part it’s a disaster within a disaster. The insurance company may have their service providers contacting you, or you may get contacted via direct solicitation, whether it be a restoration contractor, roofer, water mitigation company or the alike. Do a careful analysis about who you hire and the costs you incur.

We have seen an alarming increase in service providers swooping in while policyholders are under duress. We get it – you want help to stop the damages and do the right thing, but when a contract gets signed and work begins, you’re wondering how much will the carrier pay for the damages.

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Who is advocating for you?

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It is not your insurance company’s responsibility to prove your damages for you. This is a common misconception; we’ve watched too many people fall victim to an insufficient claim resolution.

You need to understand:

  • the deductibles,
  • the depreciation, and;
  • the replacement costs.

Direct physical loss to your property is pretty broad.  Accepting a check that was just popped in the mail may be is detrimental to your resolution.

Clients that use a public adjuster get results; they get the money needed for repairs. Garrett Claims Group works to ensure you are properly paid for the entire loss and damages.

As licensed public adjusters we will investigate, identify, and provide estimate claim reports. Some find it more beneficial overall to hire an attorney or public adjuster for a more streamline process.

No Recovery, No Fee. Lets meet to review your claim. 

Garrett Claims Group is here to help! We effectively:

  • Estimate your loss
  • Personally, investigate your property
  • Document your concerns
  • Scheduling
  • Correspondence
  • Manage your claim
  • Have access to Experts and
  • Negotiate a Final Settlement
Public Adjusters Port St. Lucie - Public Insurance Adjuster Port St. Lucie - Licensed Public Adjusters Port St. Lucie - FL

It’s not the insurance company’s job to prove your damages

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Insurance claims are a product of hurricanes; Garrett Claims Group is part of the restoration process. Many policyholders rely solely upon the insurance company to direct them and value their damages but this is not the insurance company’s job! Your insurance policy states that you are responsible to prove your claim. You are entitled to hire a public adjuster or plaintiff attorney to represent your interests. Property insurance claims need proper detailing, management and resources to obtain an equitable settlement. Gaining a settlement is the end result; let Garrett Claims Group manage the heavy lifting to get you there – start to finish.

When damages occur we suggest the following:

  • Protect Property and Make Temporary Repairs:
    • Hire contractors for emergency services
    • Preserve the damages and mitigate.
  • Claim Notification:
  • Document:
    • Insurance Policy
    • Photographs
    • Receipts
  • Claim Investigation – on your behalf we:
    • Meet and provide access to insurance company representatives
    • Respond to correspondence and requests
    • Determine claim values and scope of repairs
    • Provide accurate, detailed damage reports
    • Procure and provide access to experts
    • Provide support in alternative dispute resolutions (Mediation & Appraisal)
  • Claim Presentation – we are licensed to:
    • Provide the insurance company your insurance claim and Proof of Loss
    • Identify policy benefits and discuss disputed issues
    • Negotiate a fair and justifiable settlement

Be in control of your Claim!

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DIY Insurance Claim…what not to do

Often, property owners contact us after the they receive an unsatisfactory check from their insurance carrier. That’s not always a bad thing, but for the most part it’s a mess on top of an existing mess.  The insurance company may have their service providers contacting you, or you may get contacted via direct solicitation, whether it be a restoration contractor, roofer, water mitigation company or the alike.  Make sure you evaluate who you hire and the costs you incur.

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You got a check from your insurance company, but is it correct?

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Many insureds are receiving payments from their insurance carriers in the wake of 2020’s overly active hurricane season. That’s a good thing. It is no secret that the insurance industry’s resources are thin as a result of multiple hurricanes this year. They have sent field adjusters from near and far to assist in paying for your damages.

Since not all properties are the same, neither are the damage values. But, for purposes of speed and efficiency, many insurance carriers tend to treat properties as though they are the same. If you are unsure whether the amount you were paid by your insurance company to compensate your loss is enough to make you whole again, you should know that you have options.

Garrett Claims Group is able to re-open your claim and review the finite details in the event you are unsure whether the amount your insurance company gave you is correct.

Remember:

  • We effectively: 
    • Estimate your loss
    • Personally investigate your property
    • Document your concerns
    • Scheduling
    • Correspondence
    • Manage your claim
    • Access to Experts
    • Negotiate a Final Settlement
  • When in doubt:

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