Homeowners’ insurance will generally cover leaks that occur within your home, but if the insurer believes the leak existed for some time prior to the homeowners’ reporting of it, they will generally seek to deny coverage. Most Florida homeowners’ insurance policies contain an exclusion for long-term leaks. This can present a problem for some homeowners who did not recognize the leak in a timely manner. There are steps a homeowner can take to still obtain coverage for the damage caused by the leak.
Our homeowners’ insurance lawyers have decades of experiencing taking on insurance companies on behalf of our clients. The insurer is quick to deny many claims that should be valid. As such, we assist our homeowner clients in appealing their initial denial or otherwise fighting the minimization of their claim. Our firm consists of powerful trial attorneys who have the skill to go head to head with even the largest insurance firms.
In South Florida, many homeowners only live in their homes part-time. They may come down for the winter than return up North or elsewhere. Other homeowners travel for months at a time, and still others may be elderly or infirm. All of these circumstances could lead to a homeowner not recognizing a leak when it first occurs. Even further, some leaks occur in places that make them difficult to notice. Vigilant homeowners could remain unaware of the leak for some time.
Long term leaks are an exclusion in most homeowners’ insurance policies. This means that the burden will be on the insurance company to prove that the damage was not sudden, but occurred over a long period of time. Any homeowner who files a claim for leak damage should anticipate that the insurance adjusters will come out and look for evidence that the leak is not new. The leak and its surrounding damage will be photographed and closely examined. The adjuster will also take statements from you. With all of this evidence, the insurance company may attempt to deny the claim, stating it was a long term problem.
If the homeowner disputes that the leak was long-term or believes the claim should be honored because they discovered the leak as soon as possible an insurance dispute will arise. The homeowner should consult with an attorney as soon as possible. Your homeowners’ insurance attorney will be able to review the evidence on both sides and assess your legal rights. He or she may then work to obtain a fair insurance settlement. Rarely, long-term leak disputes will go to court. Given the complexities of long-term leak disputes, all homeowners should be on the lookout for leaks and promptly address them if discovered. So long as the insurance company is notified right away, a leak dispute should not arise.
Contact the Homeowners’ Insurance Attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano Today For Your Free Consultation!
If you need assistance with a homeowners’ insurance related matter, contact the Miami Homeowners’ Insurance Attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano. Our exceptional firm offers the assistance you need to obtain the results you desire. We have over 130 collective years of experience representing homeowners against their insurers across South Florida and will put our extensive experience to work for you. Contact our firm as soon as possible to protect your legal rights. Our firm received an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and was ranked as a top firm in South Florida by the Miami Herald. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or you can visit our website to schedule your initial consultation.