Tennessee Insurance Dispute Attorneys Experienced with Flood Damage Claims
Representing residential, commercial, and non-profit policyholders throughout the Southeast and Midwest
Flood insurance is usually separate from home and commercial property insurance. That bears repeating. Most standard property insurance policies will not cover damage caused by flooding. Coverage for floods requires a second insurance policy, available through some private insurers but primarily through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) administered by the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA).
At McWherter Scott & Bobbitt, our Tennessee-based flood insurance dispute lawyers understand that flood waters can destroy your home or business. Once the water is removed, the real problems begin due to the damage the water causes to the foundation, walls, electrical systems, and other parts of the home or building. Water damage can also destroy your valuable possessions. Our lawyers work to distinguish water damage from internal causes such as home pipes that burst, which are covered by homeowner’s policies, and events that are truly floods that are typically excluded. Flood claims are difficult because the coverage is often limited, and the coverage terms are not typically favorable to the insured. It is critical that the damage be scoped and priced accurately.
What initial steps should be taken after a flood?
In many cases, floods damage or destroy numerous homes and commercial sites at once. Local government officials from the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) and state agencies will typically set the initial rules for inspecting the communities and the individual properties. These officials should explain preliminary safety steps including:
- Turing off the water supply
- Shutting of the electricity
- Leaving the home, office, church, or other building
The insurance company should be notified so they can inspect the damage. Our Tennessee-based flood insurance lawyers also work with independent inspectors who will detail the damage and assess what steps need to be taken immediately and in the long term, so the structure and your possessions are returned to their pre-flood condition.
Policyholders should take photographs and videos of the outside and inside of the properties to document the type and scope of the damage. These images, along with written reports, should detail the depth of the water and the area the water covers. The water damage to possessions should be documented too. A second review will be required after the water is removed to determine the remaining damage.