The record-breaking Hurricane Irma has passed over Florida, causing widespread destruction, statewide power outages, and several reported deaths. As the hurricane pushes northward and deescalates into a tropical storm, safety officials from government agencies have recently allowed most Floridians to return to their homes to inspect the damage and prepare to file a Hurricane Irma damage insurance claim. Anyone who was ordered to evacuate should double-check emergency broadcasts to determine if it is truly safe to re-enter the evacuation zone before going anywhere.
Filing a Hurricane Irma Damage Claim
- Be absolutely careful: There could still be deep floodwaters in your neighborhood that can sweep your car away, or at least kill the engine, if you try to drive through it. Use the utmost caution when driving around. Downed powerlines and damaged circuit breakers could also be electrifying puddles and pools of water. Please be safe and do not jeopardize your wellbeing for any reason.
- Gradual start up: In the lucky event that there appears to be no water or electricity damage to your home, you should not switch immediately back to how things were before Hurricane Irma. If you do not turn on appliances and electronics gradually, it could short circuit the grid and cause a power outage for yourself and the surrounding area. If you are using a generator, keep it well away from your home to prevent dangerous carbon monoxide from funneling in through windows and doors. Take note of any expensive devices that have been damaged.
- Patrol the perimeter: If it is safe to do so, walk around the outside of your home and property quickly to look for any significant damage. Once again, be mindful of any puddles that could be electrified by damaged electrical sources. If possible, take someone with you for your walk-around.
- Document and record: After finishing your cursory review of your property, it is time to be much more thorough. Use a camera to photograph any and all damage that was caused by Hurricane Irma. Do not forget to check on your automobiles and most prized possessions. If you have pictures of your property from before Hurricane Irma struck, compare it to the new photographs. This is a pretty clear way to show your insurance provider what happened and why you should be provided full and adequate coverage.
- Call an attorney for help: Hurricane Irma has caused massive amounts of damage due to its force and size. Insurance companies are sure to be worried about the influx of hurricane damage claims that are soon to be filed and how much it will cost them to cover all their clients whose homes were damaged by wind and water. Some dishonest companies may try to deny or delay claims without due cause in order to save their own finances. To avoid being overlooked and disrespected by an insurer, Florida residents are being encouraged to work with an insurance lawyer when filing a Hurricane Irma claim.
The Mena Law Firm is here to help our clients fight for their right to coverage or compensation after filing a Hurricane Irma damage claim that was unfairly denied or mishandled. Our Miami insurance law attorneys know what to do and expect in such situations, having been there for Miami residents after last year's Hurricane Matthew battered the state. Discover what 45+ years of combined insurance law experience and an AV Preeminent® Rated by Martindale-Hubbell® attorney can do for your hurricane insurance claim by calling 866.224.9189 and requesting a free consultation with the Mena Law Firm. You can also use an online contact form if you prefer.