Suffering property damage to a home or business from a fire is stressful enough. However, your problems may not be over when submitting a claim through a homeowners or businessowners insurance policy. The companies that administer these policies will not pay out a dollar more than they need to. In some situations, their refusals to pay may be in violation of state law.
Insurance companies are legally required to deal in good faith with all customers who file claims. Failure to do so may entitle you to repayment for your claim in whole, interest accumulated while awaiting payment, and attorney’s fees. A Houston fire damage claims lawyer could help you collect the compensation you deserve after a denial of your insurance claim. Schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable first party insurance claims attorneys at Kirk Law Firm, PLLC.
State Laws Concerning the Regulation of Insurance Companies
The law in Houston and elsewhere in the state requires insurance companies to deal with customers in good faith. More specifically, Texas Insurance Code § 542.003 outlaws deceptive trade practices in the insurance industry. According to the statute, it is illegal for an insurance company to:
- Fail to practice good communication with clients
- Alter facts related to a loss or claim
- Refuse to offer a fair settlement once liability for a loss is clear
Bad dealings by insurance companies are some of the major reasons why property owners do not receive the payments that they deserve after a fire. Insurance companies may refuse to take a police report into account that indicates arson as a source of the blaze. They may also unfairly dispute physical property located on the premises that suffered fire damage. Having a Houston fire damage claims attorney on one’s side helps to ensure that insurance companies play by the rules present in state law.
Property Owners’ Rights Under Insurance Policies
Every individual or company seeking out insurance for their real estate must be sure to closely read and understand the terms of the contract. This is especially important when considering the clauses that pertain to covered losses.
Fire is a common reason to file a claim against an insurance policy. However, a policy may not cover all aspects of this tragedy. For instance, the cause of the fire may be a reason why an insurance company might deny coverage. Examples can include electrical fires or those that are the product of arson.
It is essential to be familiar with the specific language in all fire insurance policies. Courts will never interfere with the rights of parties to enter into contracts, and the language of the policy will determine if an insurance company is likely to issue any benefits. When it appears that an insurance company is denying a claim despite language in a document that covers the loss, a Houston fire damage claims attorney may be able to assist.
If an insurance company has denied a claim based upon the source of the fire or the subsequent type of damage, one of our fire damage claims lawyers in Houston could help to dispute by alleging a breach of contract. This could result in compensation for all of your damage and losses.
Contact a Houston Fire Damage Claims Attorney Today
The holders of homeowners or businessowners insurance policies have the right to file claims to collect benefits after a fire. However, the extent of their ability to collect payments depends both upon the insurance policy’s specific provisions and the willingness of the insurance company to act in good faith. Failures in either area might result in a reduced settlement offer or even a full denial of benefits.
People who have received a negative result after filing a claim should reach out to a Houston fire damage claims lawyer at Kirk Law Firm, PLLC now. Our team is ready to analyze your policy, investigate the loss, and demand that insurance companies provide appropriate compensation according to the terms of their policies. Contact us today to get started.