Compassionate Attorney Assisting Homeowners in Pensacola and Surrounding Areas
Hurricanes are an unfortunate fact of life in Pensacola, with multiple storms striking the city and the surrounding region each year. Hurricane Sally is just the most recent example. This storm dropped over two feet of rain throughout the area, which led to pervasive flooding. Additionally, it caused extensive wind damage and resulted in the loss of power for hundreds of thousands of people. Storms can cause widespread property damage that can be costly and time-consuming to remediate. Ryan M. Cardoso is a skilled Pensacola hurricane insurance lawyer who is ready to handle first-party insurance disputes on behalf of property owners.
While many people insure their properties for hurricane damage, insurance companies do not always willingly honor their obligations. Unfortunately, many people are left without sufficient means to repair their properties. If you suffered losses due to a hurricane, and your insurance company denies you benefits, you may be able to pursue a claim against them. Ryan M. Cardoso will fight tirelessly to help you pursue any benefits that you might be owed.
Mitigating and Documenting Damages
While the path back to normalcy following Hurricane Sally and other catastrophic storms may be long, there are measures that property owners can take to help protect their rights regarding any insurance coverage that they may have. Specifically, people affected by a hurricane should review their insurance policies to determine which coverage they are afforded and whether any exclusions may apply. Furthermore, they should cover any exposed areas of their properties with a tarp to prevent further wind and water damage. Additionally, they should thoroughly document the extent of their losses via videos and photographs, if possible. Finally, they should make an inventory of any furniture, devices, food, and clothing that they are forced to discard before getting rid of the items so that they can demonstrate to their insurance company what was lost in the storm.
Pursuing Claims Against Insurance Companies
If an insurer denies coverage, a hurricane insurance attorney in Pensacola can help an insured present evidence that losses were caused by a storm that was covered under an insurance policy. In some instances, an insurance company may accept a claim but dispute the degree of its insured’s damages. Fortunately, the law provides remedies for insured individuals who are denied benefits by their insurance companies.
For example, an insured may file a civil lawsuit against the company that issued its insurance policy, alleging a breach of contract claim due to the failure to pay benefits. Under Florida law, a plaintiff alleging a breach of a contract must prove that a valid contract existed, but the defendant breached a material term of the contract, and the plaintiff suffered losses as a result. In cases involving an insurance dispute, the insurance policy constitutes a contract, and a failure to pay benefits owed pursuant to the provisions of the policy may be considered a breach.
In addition to a breach of contract claim, a policy holder and a Pensacola hurricane insurance attorney may be able to pursue a bad faith claim against the insurance company. In Florida, a plaintiff alleging bad faith must prove that the insurer engaged in bad-faith conduct, the plaintiff provided the insurer with the notice required under the law, and the underlying claim was resolved in the plaintiff’s favor. Examples of behavior that is considered bad-faith conduct include denying or delaying the payment of benefits after it is reasonably clear that they are owed.
Contact a Trusted Pensacola Attorney
Insurance coverage is meant to lessen the financial burdens caused by hurricanes and other unavoidable events. When insurers refuse to provide their customers with the benefits that they are owed, it can lead to significant economic hardships. If you suffered losses due to Hurricane Sally or any other storm, and your insurance claim was denied or disputed, you should speak to an attorney as soon as possible. Ryan M. Cardoso is a dedicated hurricane insurance lawyer in Pensacola who can advocate aggressively in your favor. Mr. Cardoso regularly represents people in Pensacola, West Pensacola, Ferry Pass, Cantonment, Brent, Bellview, Century, Gulf Breeze, Fort Walton Beach, Milton, Navarre, Jay, Crestview, and Niceville, as well as other areas of Escambia, Santa Rosa, and Okaloosa Counties. You can contact Mr. Cardoso via the form online or at (850) 466-2073 to set up a consultation.