What are common reasons why insurers deny or underpay hail and wind roof and other property damage insurance claims?
There are several common reasons why insurers may deny or underpay hail and wind insurance claims:
- Damage not meeting the deductible: Many insurance policies have a deductible that must be met before the insurance company will pay for any damages. If the cost of the repairs is less than the deductible, the insurance company will not pay out the claim.
- Pre-existing damage: Insurance companies may deny claims for damage that was present on the roof before the storm. Policyholders need to have a clear understanding of the condition of their roof prior to filing a claim.
- Failure to maintain the roof: Insurance companies may also deny claims if the policyholder has not properly maintained the condition of the roof. This could include failing to repair leaks, applying coatings, keeping the system clean, or replacing damaged shingles.
- Age of the roof: Insurance policies may have restrictions on coverage for older roofs. If the roof is past a certain age, your policy may only pay for a partial replacement or Actual Cash Value, rather than a full replacement.
- Dispute over the cause of the damage: Insurance companies may dispute the cause of the damage, especially if there are other factors at play, such as poor installation, manufacturer’s defect, or inadequate ventilation.
- Incomplete or inadequate documentation: Insurers require detailed documentation of the damage, including photographs and repair estimates, to support the claim. Failure to provide sufficient documentation can result in a denial or underpayment of the claim.
It is important for Policyholders to review their insurance policies carefully and to work with an experienced public adjuster to ensure that they understand policy terms, conditions, benefits, and exclusions.