It’s no secret that dealing with home insurance claims can be stressful. From the damage to your home to the insurance company’s complicated documents to the reality of potential litigation, you have a lot on your mind.
When people experience these kinds of problems, they usually look for a way to solve them as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out in their favor.
One way people attempt to cut corners is by enlisting a public adjuster to fight an insurance claim. But how much leverage does a public adjuster really have against an insurance company? This post will explain what you need to know.
What Is a Public Adjuster?
A public adjuster is an independent contractor who specializes in insurance policies. They help individuals settle claims with their insurance companies.
The insurance company will provide an adjuster for no charge up front, although they will take a percentage of the payout just like a lawyer would. Typically, the adjuster is not employed by the insurance company, although this can vary depending on the company.
The important thing to keep in mind regarding a public adjuster is that they are not a home insurance attorney. This means that they can only help with the claims process. They will not be able to advocate for a larger payout or assist with litigation if the insurance company is not compliant.
If the latter situation sounds familiar, you likely need to contact a bad-faith lawyer.
Key Differences Between a Public Adjuster and a Home Insurance Attorney
To help you figure out the best path forward for your situation, here are some key differences between a public adjuster and a home insurance attorney.
As mentioned earlier, the public adjuster will likely take a percentage of your payout once the claim has been settled. They will do this without advocating for a higher payout because technically, they’re not allowed to do so. Even if they could advocate for you, they do not have the leverage required to pull it off.
Leverage is important. What can the public adjuster do if the insurance company does not agree with them? The answer is, not much.
Conversely, an experienced bad-faith lawyer will know how to engage with the insurance company in a manner that productively escalates the situation. This lets the insurance company know that you’re serious and holds their feet to the fire when it comes to awarding you appropriate compensation.
In addition to leverage, a public adjuster differs from a qualified bad faith attorney due to their inability to collect legally available remedies, which consist of penalties and fees that can render your claim more valuable in certain states.
These remedies can be valuable tools during negotiations and litigation. This alone is reason enough to hire an experienced bad-faith lawyer for your home insurance claim.
While remedies and leverage are indispensable tools that an attorney can use to bolster your claim, the most important factor is experience. A seasoned home insurance attorney will know exactly how to talk to the insurance company, as well as the judge if litigation progresses to that point.
Most home insurance claims pertain to coverage, which is why having a successful trial attorney on your side can make all the difference. From negotiations to litigation, an experienced attorney will be able to evaluate your evidence, formulate a strategy, and execute the plan in a comprehensive manner.
These actions, coupled with your lawyer’s experience, can maximize the value of your claim and give the insurance company more incentive to negotiate.
You Want to Hire an Attorney — Now What?
If you have decided that hiring a trial attorney is the right move for you, there are a few things you need to take into account.
First, make sure that their reputation and trial record are up to par. You don’t want to hire an attorney who is solely focused on the settlement amount; you want someone who genuinely cares about the outcome and is intent on representing you to the best of their ability.
Additionally, make sure that your attorney is seeking penalties and attorney’s fees in court. This will maximize the amount you are awarded in the event litigation is successful.
Ready to Get Started? So Are We
If you are looking for a qualified trial lawyer with decades of experience, Brasher Law is here to help. Under the leadership of Clint Brasher, the firm has successfully tried home insurance and commercial claims in Louisiana and Texas. We have been able to win substantial recoveries for our clients, including penalties and fees.
If you need a qualified attorney in your corner, contact us today to schedule your free consultation and let us know how we can help.