Search Box Here
InsuranceAfter an Accident Insurance ClaimsMake the insurance claims process easier by following these steps.Am I Covered? Car Insurance QuestionsAsk your insurance agent these questions. It helps to understand the types and extent of coverage you have. There are a lot, but you're paying a lot.Appealing an Insurance SettlementIf you have a difference of opinion on your insurance settlement, you can begin an appeal process, starting with your agent, moving to the claims adjuster at your insurance company, or your state's watchdog agency for insurance consumers. What's Your Insurance Score?Like a credit score used by banks, insurance scores rate your risk (how financially stable you are). Research has shown that people who are in better shape credit-wise tend to file less insurance claims. Working With a Claims AdjusterOnce you have notified your insurance company of your loss, you will meet with a claims or field adjuster employed by the company. If You Have No InsuranceIf you have no insurance (or less insurance coverage than you thought), your recovery will be based on your own resources and help from friends, relatives and your community. Estimating Your Home's ValueDo you have enough insurance on your home to rebuild it if it is destroyed? Do you even know how to calculate the amount of insurance you need? Key Insurance Terms Determining ValueKnowing these terms helps to understand the process insurance agencies and relief organizations use to determine the value of your loss. Your tax accountant can also help you when claiming your losses. Top Homeowners Insurance MythsHomeowner's insurance can be a bit complicated. William S. Coffman, Jr., WHN's Guest Columnist, provides some common myths about insurance and insights into the realities of insurance and the claims process.Property Damage Questions for Your AgentThese are some questions to ask your insurance agent. These may confirm what you already know or may help you understand the extent and specifics of your coverage.Insurance Riders Do I Need One?You pay your homeowners premiums on time and feel reasonably comfortable that you are well covered should disaster ever strike, right? Wrong. Even if you think you have adequate coverage, you could be drastically underinsured.Life Insurance and Healthcare CostsIf you or someone you care about has been diagnosed with a serious illness, you may have already discovered that dealing with actual health issues is just part of the individual puzzle you must reassess and reassemble. Am I Covered? Home Insurance QuestionsThe more you know and understand about home insurance, the better you can insure yourself and your family in case of loss. Am I Covered? Life Insurance QuestionsHere is a 'starter' list of things to consider and questions to ask your agent. You'll probably come up with questions or ideas that best fit your needs. Choosing a Life Insurance BeneficiaryIf you own assets, from bank accounts to life insurance, it's important that you choose a beneficiary. Filing an Insurance ClaimA few tips on how to file a claim after a natural disaster, fire or theft. Motorcycle InsuranceThe more you know and understand about motorcycle insurance, accident coverage, and your own policy, the better off you are. Pet InsurancePet insurance is similar to health insurance: you may be reimbursed if the unexpected occurs. Property Damage What to Expect from Your AgentHere is a list of actions an insurance agent may follow after a claim. If you receive money from your agent or arrangements are being made for you, be sure to ask your agent what is covered under your policy and how much you are covered for. Reviewing and Updating Your Homeowner's InsuranceWhen was the last time you reviewed your home insurance policy? According to Loretta Worters, vice president of the Insurance Information Institute, there are six events that should trigger a review.Flood InsuranceOne of the most important things that you can do to protect your home and family before a flood is to purchase a flood insurance policy - even if you don't live in a flood-prone area. Earthquake Insurance ResourcesUseful links to information about disaster-related insurance resources.

Top Homeowners Insurance Myths

Homeowner's insurance can be a bit complicated. William S. Coffman, Jr., WHN's Guest Columnist, provides some common myths about insurance and insights into the realities of insurance and the claims process.

My Insurance Company Insures My Home.

Reality: Your homeowner's insurance company insures you against the risk of financial loss arising from the ownership of your home. In this way ,the insurance company can determine the financial loss it wishes to pay you for. To the extent you can prove your financial loss, all other things considered, you can collect.

My Insurance Company "Adjuster" Represents My Best Interests.

Reality: The adjuster hired by the insurance company will determine the minimum amount of money the insurance company is contractually obligated to pay. In this regard, they represent the insurance company's interests and not yours. To the degree those interests align you benefit. To the degree they do not, you are left to your own devices.

My Insurance Company Has a Duty to Put My Interests First.

Reality: You have a contract with your insurance company. Your Insurance Company only has to fulfill its contractual obligations. The insurance company does not have to put your interests first.

My Insurance Company Will Determine the Value of My Loss.

Reality: Your insurance company will try to determine the value of your loss if you let it. The lowest value.

The Insurance Company's Word is Final.

Reality: The provisions of the policy provide cost effective ways to assure the insurance company will pay the true value of your claim. You also have the right to hire a public insurance adjuster or an attorney to assist you in obtaining the true value of your claim.

The Company Will Subtract a Deductible from My Settlement.

Reality: There are some circumstances which the insurance company should not subtract a deductible.

If I Have a Covered Loss, My Insurance Company Will Pay My Claim in Full.

Reality: Insurance policies contain many exclusions, conditions and/or limitations that insurance companies use to limit the amount of the claim otherwise due their policyholder.

My Insurance Company Will Pay for My Additional Living Expenses if My Home is Damaged.

Reality: There are conditions that must be present before an insurance company considers your loss-of-use claim. Even if these conditions are present, your insurance company only owes your additional living expenses and not your out-of-pocket expenses.

The Insurance Company Must Determine the Value of My Claim.

Reality: The burden of proving the value of your claim is your responsibility. To the extent you can demonstrate to the company your claim's worth, you can collect. Deductibles, special limitations and exclusions also affect how much the insurance company will pay.

The Insurance Company's Adjuster Will Advise Me of My Rights under the Policy.

Reality: They should, but they don't always.

I've Paid My Premiums, I Have a Loss, My Insurance Company will Take Care of Me.

Reality: It doesn't matter that you've paid your premiums for years and years. The Insurance Company's obligations are only those contained in the contract.

Experts Hired by the Insurance Company Will Determine What is Damaged.

Reality: Experts are hired by the insurance company to assist them in determining whether or not to cover the loss. If the insurance company hires an expert whose findings result in a no-coverage position asserted by the insurance company, you may want to hire your own expert to obtain an independent opinion. Remember, experts working for insurance companies represent the insurance company's interests, not yours.

The Insurance Company Will Give Copies of the Notes, Test Results, Pictures and Reports Regarding My Home.

Reality: Not necessarily. Insurance companies may be acting "in anticipation of litigation." In other words, it may not have to provide any part of its investigation to you.

If My Home is Damaged and the Insurance Company Pays Me, I Will Be Able to Immediately Begin to Repair my House.

Reality: Not Necessarily. If your home is mortgaged, the insurance company will include the name of your mortgage company on the check. The mortgage company may then insist upon placing the insurance proceeds into escrow and have you petition them to release the money. If you are behind on your mortgage, the mortgage company may refuse to release any money until the mortgage is brought current.

William S. Coffman, Jr. is a public adjuster and the president of Strategic Adjustment Services, Inc., based in Miami Beach, Florida.

InsuranceAfter an Accident Insurance ClaimsMake the insurance claims process easier by following these steps.Am I Covered? Car Insurance QuestionsAsk your insurance agent these questions. It helps to understand the types and extent of coverage you have. There are a lot, but you're paying a lot.Appealing an Insurance SettlementIf you have a difference of opinion on your insurance settlement, you can begin an appeal process, starting with your agent, moving to the claims adjuster at your insurance company, or your state's watchdog agency for insurance consumers. What's Your Insurance Score?Like a credit score used by banks, insurance scores rate your risk (how financially stable you are). Research has shown that people who are in better shape credit-wise tend to file less insurance claims. Working With a Claims AdjusterOnce you have notified your insurance company of your loss, you will meet with a claims or field adjuster employed by the company. If You Have No InsuranceIf you have no insurance (or less insurance coverage than you thought), your recovery will be based on your own resources and help from friends, relatives and your community. Estimating Your Home's ValueDo you have enough insurance on your home to rebuild it if it is destroyed? Do you even know how to calculate the amount of insurance you need? Key Insurance Terms Determining ValueKnowing these terms helps to understand the process insurance agencies and relief organizations use to determine the value of your loss. Your tax accountant can also help you when claiming your losses. Top Homeowners Insurance MythsHomeowner's insurance can be a bit complicated. William S. Coffman, Jr., WHN's Guest Columnist, provides some common myths about insurance and insights into the realities of insurance and the claims process.Property Damage Questions for Your AgentThese are some questions to ask your insurance agent. These may confirm what you already know or may help you understand the extent and specifics of your coverage.Insurance Riders Do I Need One?You pay your homeowners premiums on time and feel reasonably comfortable that you are well covered should disaster ever strike, right? Wrong. Even if you think you have adequate coverage, you could be drastically underinsured.Life Insurance and Healthcare CostsIf you or someone you care about has been diagnosed with a serious illness, you may have already discovered that dealing with actual health issues is just part of the individual puzzle you must reassess and reassemble. Am I Covered? Home Insurance QuestionsThe more you know and understand about home insurance, the better you can insure yourself and your family in case of loss. Am I Covered? Life Insurance QuestionsHere is a 'starter' list of things to consider and questions to ask your agent. You'll probably come up with questions or ideas that best fit your needs. Choosing a Life Insurance BeneficiaryIf you own assets, from bank accounts to life insurance, it's important that you choose a beneficiary. Filing an Insurance ClaimA few tips on how to file a claim after a natural disaster, fire or theft. Motorcycle InsuranceThe more you know and understand about motorcycle insurance, accident coverage, and your own policy, the better off you are. Pet InsurancePet insurance is similar to health insurance: you may be reimbursed if the unexpected occurs. Property Damage What to Expect from Your AgentHere is a list of actions an insurance agent may follow after a claim. If you receive money from your agent or arrangements are being made for you, be sure to ask your agent what is covered under your policy and how much you are covered for. Reviewing and Updating Your Homeowner's InsuranceWhen was the last time you reviewed your home insurance policy? According to Loretta Worters, vice president of the Insurance Information Institute, there are six events that should trigger a review.Flood InsuranceOne of the most important things that you can do to protect your home and family before a flood is to purchase a flood insurance policy - even if you don't live in a flood-prone area. Earthquake Insurance ResourcesUseful links to information about disaster-related insurance resources.