Most Florida homeowners would carry homeowners insurance even if it was not mandated by the terms of the mortgage loan on the property. After all, the family home is typically the single most valuable asset owned, and repairs for any damage to the home or liability for any incidents on the premises can be extremely costly. Among the types of losses that may occur, damage done by water poses a risk that can be very expensive to recover from. However, to the chagrin and surprise of some homeowners who proceed to file a claim, not all water damage is covered under the standard homeowner’s policy.
Although there are some exceptions, most people never read their insurance policies, and if they do, it’s only after the fact of a loss. Insurance experts point out that a first step before filing a claim is to verify the specific incident that occurred is covered and not excluded. Too often, a homeowner simply assumes a loss will be reimbursed, but clear language of the policy dictates otherwise.
For example, damage due to floods is not covered by a general policy – a homeowner must purchase separate flood insurance to be covered. A common basis for denial that can be the subject of disagreement revolves around the issue of maintenance. Damage caused by an item improperly maintained is not covered but may be covered if it is the result of an accident or a sudden and unexpected occurrence. Sometimes the difference is not easy to discern.
All insurance companies are charged with a duty of acting in good faith. An insurance law attorney can offer guidance and counsel to a policy holder on whether or not a claim is being handled properly.