Many people assume that the most destructive weather events are hurricanes and tornadoes. While these powerful storms can leave an area devastated, hailstorms cause the most damage to homes, vehicles and businesses in the state of Texas.
Unfortunately, many homeowners may not be insured for hail damage since the coverage is not automatically included in many insurance policies. This may leave many Texas homeowners holding the bill for damage after a severe hailstorm.
This June, Dallas experienced the second-worst hailstorm in the history of the state. Baseball and golf ball-sized hail caused $1.2 billion in property damage in the city and surrounding suburbs. Most of these storms occur in the spring and summer months, when Texas’ humid, hot weather creates the perfect conditions for severe storms.
The worst hailstorm in state history occurred in May 1995 in Tarrant County. This storm injured 109 people and caused $1.6 billion in property damage. The Insurance Council of Texas found that the county has had more hail events than any other Texas county since 1955.
Some homeowners find that they lack hail damage coverage only after they try to file a claim for damage done to their homes. Often, homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover hail damage. Windstorm coverage generally must be purchased to cover damage from hail. If a homeowner does not purchase windstorm insurance, he or she may not be covered in the event of a hailstorm.
Homeowners should educate themselves on their insurance policies to determine if their current policy includes hail damage coverage. It is important to get coverage questions answered before damage occurs in a Texas hailstorm. Homeowners need to understand the limits of their policies and exactly what type of damages are and are not covered. Additionally, homeowners should look into health care coverage for injuries sustained by a storm.
After a storm, homeowners should take pictures of the damages to submit to their insurance companies. Once a claim is filed, insurers must notify homeowners within 15 days that they are accepting or rejecting the claim or explain why they need more time. If accepted, insurers have five days to send a claim check.
Hailstorm damage can wreak havoc on property and health. If you have been injured in a hail storm, please contact an experienced personal injury attorney.