Property damage is one of the most significant issues people are dealing with regarding insurance after Hurricane Ian. How much should your insurance company pay, and can an adjuster stack on costs?
Insurance is a critical issue in Florida, but many people are dealing with insurance in the wake of Hurricane Ian.
WINK News sat down with a public adjuster to answer some of the more frequently asked questions.
One WINK News viewer emailed us to ask how a public adjuster is paid, how the lawyers are paid and do they get paid out of my claim settlement.
Public Adjuster Scotty Moland is helping to answer those questions. “How we get paid is we take 10% of what we recover. So if you’ve already been paid a certain amount of money, we don’t take your recovery on that amount. It’s only about the money that we get.”
An insurance lawyer gets paid by submitting bills to the insurance company if you settle or after you win at trial.
That brings us to our next question; new legislation passed in December ended one-way legal fees, making policyholders responsible for paying lawyers if insurance companies.
“Don’t act in good faith. And there are cases to that effect. Not only are they required to pay the full claim, but they are required to pay all the insurance attorneys’ fees,” said Florida Senator Kathleen Passidomo.
Acting in good faith can start with a public adjuster. That’s what Moland does for a living. “It is not acting in good faith to violate the statute by charging more than 10% on hurricane loss. It’s not an act of good faith to charge fees to inspect somebody’s home. There’s no upfront money.”
If you’re signing a contract with a public adjuster, look out for a few red flags. “If the contract says anything above 10% for a catastrophic loss, that is a red flag, and they should probably be reported. Any language that makes them a full assignee of the check, or something along those lines that would be a red flag for me,” Moland said.
Another red flag for a public adjuster is if they’re signing up your claim and sending you an attorney without doing any work.
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