Water damage is one of the most common claims filed by homeowners in Florida. Unfortunately, many people find themselves in a slippery situation when they discover that the damage to their home is only partially covered or not covered at all.
Whether or not your insurance company will cover your repairs really depends on the language of your policy. If your insurer has denied your claim but you believe that it should have been approved, contact Leader & Leader P.A.
Michael D. Leader is an insurance claims attorney in Fort Lauderdale who has seen firsthand just how unethical insurance companies can be in their pursuit of higher profits. Mr. Leader will evaluate your policy and help you enforce your rights. Call 954-523-2020 to schedule a free consultation.
Will My Homeowners’ Insurance Cover Damage from a Burst Pipe?
If you have a standard HO3 insurance policy, it should cover damage from a broken pipe; however, these policies typically do not cover flood damage. So, if the damage occurred outside your home, you will have to show that it was in fact caused by a “covered peril”.
If the insurance company determines that your water damage was caused by negligent maintenance—for example, if you failed to fix a leaking washing machine, it will probably deny your claim.
Will My Insurance Cover Damage from Drain and Sewer Backups?
The standard HO3 policy does not usually cover damage from sewer backups, but you may be able to add sewer backup coverage for complete protection. Furthermore, although the insurance company will often, if not always deny such claims, even if there is backflow from a sewage or septic system, it may still be covered depending upon why it occurred and where the problem that caused the backup is (i.e. within your property line or outside of it).
What about Damage from Wind-Propelled Rain?
If wind-propelled rain enters your home through a hole in your roof, it may be covered by your homeowners’ insurance policy. However, many of them now have language that the damage you sustained was caused by the water entering through a hole or opening that was caused by a covered peril. IF you can prove that the hole in your roof was caused by a covered peril, you should be covered If you cannot demonstrate that the hole was caused by a covered peril, the insurance company will almost certainly dispute your claim if that language is in your policy.
Will My Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Mold Removal?
The answer to this question really depends on your policy. Many policies have separate mold provisions or “endorsements” that are limited in various ways, including the amount of coverage for a mold loss as opposed to other sources of damage. However, your insurance may not cover a mold outbreak that arises due to negligent maintenance. If mold grows in your home because you ignored a water leak, drainage issue, or high humidity levels, your insurance may try to avoid coverage. Depending on your policy, this may be something you can challenge and win!
I Disagree with My Insurance Company’s Decision to Deny My Claim—What Should I Do?
There are many legal grounds for a homeowners’ insurance company to deny a claim. This could happen if your policy does not cover the specific type of damage or if you waited too long to notify your insurer about the damage. The most important things are generally to act fast, mitigate your damages, if you have to have repairs made quickly to prevent further loss before the carrier has been notified or inspected and take photographs of the damage before it is repaired. You want to timely notify your insurance company but if you have questions or concerns, it is never a bad idea to contact an attorney first.
However, insurance companies have financial incentive to deny claims, and they often do so for unethical reasons. If your claim was denied but you believe that the damage was caused by a covered peril, contact Leader & Leader P.A. to discuss your case. Call 954-523-2020 to schedule a free initial consultation with an insurance lawyer in Fort Lauderdale.