The following is an excerpt from a Wall Street Journal Article (original can be found here: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB1039442112630223993 )
"In the wake of a disaster, homeowners’ natural response is to grab their policy and call their insurance agent pronto. But spend a few moments perusing consumer Web sites like Allstateinsurancesucks.com and StateFarmSucks.com (are you noticing a trend here?) and you’ll quickly see that plenty of homeowners who have gone that route have lived to regret it.
The reason? Most homeowners, it turns out, have only a vague idea of what their homeowners insurance actually covers. Once a claim is filed, the insurance company will send over an independent adjuster to evaluate the claim. But these independent adjusters aren’t so independent. Their job is to represent the insurance company’s interests first, and yours second. After all, the insurance company is paying the independent adjuster.
Paul Cohen, founder of New York-based consumer advocacy Web site Fight Bad-Faith Insurance Companies, says insurance companies pay close attention to their bottom line. Thus, when a customer files a claim it’s not uncommon for independent adjuster to tell the homeowner that certain claims aren’t valid due to certain clauses or omissions in their insurance coverage. And homeowners, already distraught due to the disaster, don’t have the desire to argue with the insurance company representatives’ estimate of their loss.
So when disaster strikes, it may very well be worth hiring a professional public adjuster as your advocate in an insurance claim. These adjusters specialize in combing over your damaged property and your homeowners policy, and they make sure the insurer doesn’t snake away from a valid claim. Public adjusters many times are veteran insurance company claims adjusters who know how insurance companies operate and have expertise in negotiating property claims to make sure you get the most out of your policy.
“Generally a good insurance company will honor its commitments, but what we’ve found is there are a whole lot of not-so-good insurance companies out there,” Mr. Cohen says. “If you have any sort of significant homeowner property claim, we recommend that you not file a claim without having a public adjuster to represent your interests.”
Call ACI Adjustment Group, licensed Public Adjusters at 1-800-809-4302 for a FREE Damage Consultation. Visit www.aciadjustment.com for more info.