In the unfortunate event a flood does occur, there are a few important steps to follow when filing a claim.
1. Report Your Loss to Insurance Agent or Company
When filing a claim, it is important to have the name of your insurance company, policy number and contact number or email on hand. Contact your insurance agent or write a notice to your insurance company immediately to report a notice of loss.
2. Separate Damage from Undamaged Property
Flood insurance policies require you to separate the damaged from undamaged property. This helps the adjuster sort through your property more efficiently.
3. List of All Damaged Contents
When an individual purchases content coverage, their contents will be insured when damaged by a flood. Make a list of all of the damaged property, including the item, brand name, serial number, the cost of the item, model, number, etc.
4. Structural Damage
List any area on your home or property that has been damaged by the flood. This way you can point it out to the adjuster when the time comes.
Handling The Claim:
Once you have notified your insurance agent or company of the loss, an adjuster should contact you within one to two days. However, this time period will depend on the severity of the natural disaster or flood.
When the adjuster scopes the loss, they will take measurements, pictures, and other forms of documentation to list the flood damage. During this time, it is important to point out any damage you have seen to the adjuster. If extensive damage is done, the adjuster may refer you to a local contact.
Once the adjuster is finished assessing the flood damage, they will prepare a detailed estimate for the damages. The estimate should be used when preparing for repair work.
Supporting The Claim:
1. Proof of Loss
A Proof of Loss must be in place to claim your damages. This needs to contain all of the information that is required by a flood insurance policy. The Proof of Loss and supporting documents need to be signed and turned into your insurance company within 60 days after the loss.
The Proof of Loss, different from a claim, needs to have a detailed list and estimate to replace or repair the property that has been damaged. Typically, the adjuster will provide you with this information.
2. Extensions Exceeding 60 Days
Depending on the severity of the flood, FEMA may extend the time that one has to complete the Proof of Loss.
3. When Is Your Claim Payable?
The claim will be payable once you and the insurance agent or company come to an agreement on the amount of damage that occurred. Also, the insurance agent or company will need your Proof of Loss and Claim to allow payment of the claim.
4. Payment for Personal Property and Building Property
When getting a payment for the personal property, the check will usually be in the individual’s name. When getting a payment for building property, the check must include the mortgage company name or the individual that is in charge of the mortgage.
5. Additional Payment
When an individual discovers additional damage, they may file a request for Additional Flood Payment. This will require them to complete the process over, however, this time it will be with the additional damage that has been discovered. The additional damage request must fall within 60 days of the flood unless FEMA has extended the limit.
6. Increased Cost of Compliance Claim Filing
If you received a letter that determines the building property has been severely damaged, on may file an Increase Cost of Compliance Claim. Just like other claims, you have a 60-day limit to submit the Proof of Loss and four years to choose the mitigation process.