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Miami Property Damage Lawyer: How Bad Was the Aftermath of Hurricane Ian?

People who have lived in Florida for the last thirty or forty years know just how much damage a hurricane can cause. Going back to 1992, when Hurricane Andrew wreaked havoc on Florida homeowners, our Miami property damage lawyers have been on the scene.

Here, we’ll discuss the aftermath of Hurricane Ian and explain why so many insurance claims have been denied or left unpaid.

Hurricane Ian Was the Worst Storm Since Hurricane Andrew in 1992

There have been dozens of hurricanes in Florida since the early 1990s. However, until Hurricane Ian, very few had caused the devastating damage that Hurricane Andrew caused.

Our Miami property damage lawyers have met with hundreds of property owners over the years. Many of them came to see us because their insurance claims had been denied. 

While it’s bad enough that this could happen after a typical Florida storm, it’s unbelievable how many claims have been denied in the months since Hurricane Ian.

Our Miami Property Damage Lawyers Also Know There Was Tremendous Storm Surge Damage

Whenever there’s a big storm or another weather-related event, our Miami property damage lawyers always look to see how bad the damage was. It’s important that our associates have an understanding of what to expect in the days and weeks following the event.

When new clients come to see us after a hurricane, they trust that we’ll be fully briefed on how bad the storm was. After Hurricane Ian, one of the first things our Miami property damage lawyers did was assess the overall damage.

Hurricane Ian Also Caused Severe Wind Damage

While there was a tremendous amount of property damage caused by the storm surge caused by Hurricane Ian, that wasn’t all. There was also a significant amount of damage caused by high winds.

In fact, according to CoreLogic, the winds caused anywhere from $22 billion to $32 billion. This was on top of the $6 billion to $15 billion in storm surge damage. 

It isn’t surprising that so many insurance claims were denied or left unpaid. There was no way the insurance carriers could afford to pay all of these claims.

The Total Property Damage Caused by Hurricane Ian Was as High as $47 Billion

As briefly stated above, the wind and storm surge damage caused by Hurricane Ian was tremendous. Some cities were hit harder than others. For example, more than 369,000 homes in Cape Coral were damaged or destroyed in the storm.

In Naples, Florida, there were close to 200,000 homes and businesses destroyed. Unfortunately, many of the property owners were never compensated for their losses. 

In fact, an estimated 40% of all insurance claims related to Hurricane Ian were either denied or put on the back burner.

Miami property damage lawyer with home insurance claim

Close to 900,000 Structures Were Severely Damages During Hurricane Ian

In total, more than 900,000 properties were damaged by Hurricane Ian. According to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, 683,000 claims were filed in Southwestern Florida alone. 

Of the 683,000 claims, close to 90,000 have not been paid yet. They are sitting in limbo which means that property owners have no idea if they’ll ever receive a check from the insurance company.

Our Miami Property Damage Lawyers Know That Close to 40% of Claims Were Not Paid

When all was said and done, approximately 40% of all the insurance claims filed were either denied or left unpaid. Many of them are still open, pending further investigation. 

The problem with this is that after a major storm, like Hurricane Ian, there shouldn’t be much of an investigation involved.

Usually, when a claim is still open and unpaid for more than four or five months, it’s because the insurance adjuster suspects something isn’t right. They may doubt the reason provided by the homeowner. Or they may think the claimant is exaggerating the damage suffered by their home or business.

There is no question about just how devastating Hurricane Ian was. 

Many Claims Were Denied Simply Because Homeowner’s Policies Don’t Cover Flood Damage

Of course, many of the claims were denied because the homeowner’s policy didn’t cover flood damage. 

There’s no way an insurance company is going to pay out claims they don’t have to pay. They would go bankrupt if they did this. Most homeowners’ policies do not cover flood damage.

Other Claimants Were Only Paid a Nominal Amount

Some of our clients reported that they were only paid a few hundred dollars. This almost comes across as an insult. What kind of repairs can a homeowner make with $500? These are the cases our Miami property damage lawyers like to get involved in.

Homeowners should be treated with respect, especially after suffering a loss. Hurricane Ian destroyed everything in its path. Insurance adjusters know this. It’s simply a matter of cutting corners and trying to pay out as little as possible.

If Your Claim Was Denied or Is Still in Limbo, Contact One of Our Miami Property Damage Lawyers

After suffering something like Hurricane Ian, the last thing you want to hear is that your insurance claim has been denied. Our Miami property damage lawyers have spoken with dozens of homeowners whose claims were either denied or have been sitting in lingo for six months now.

We suggest that anyone who finds themselves in the same boat contact our office. One of our property damage attorneys in Miami can review your claim and see whether it is worth pursuing.

There are some cases where there’s very little a Miami property damage lawyer can do to help. If all the damage was caused by flooding, your homeowner’s policy will not cover this damage. Unless, of course, you have supplemental insurance or a rider.

We offer new clients a free, initial consultation. There’s nothing stopping you from coming in to meet with a skilled Miami property damage lawyer.

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