10 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Public Adjuster in Florida

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Hiring a Public Adjuster

Public Adjusters are a necessity in today’s time where insurance companies try to get away by paying as little as possible. God forbid, but if ever your home or office gets damaged, and the loss is quite substantive, very likely the insurance company will send across their insurance adjuster who will try and downplay the loss. At this time, the one person who shall bat for you and not the insurance company is the Public Adjuster. 

Hiring A Public Adjuster Is To Your Benefit

Typically, you either accept the offer made by the insurance company, or you sue them. The problem with accepting is that you get paid way less than what you deserve. The problem with suing is that while the case is being judged, you have to bear the legal fees and the cost of repairing the damage. Neither scenario is favorable.

A Public Adjuster can help you get the maximum possible settlement without having to accept the insurance company’s low ball figure or suing them. They help you make a counteroffer with complete documentation and proof of loss such that the insurance company has no other option than to approve your claim.

10 Questions To Ask When Hiring A Public Adjuster

1. Do They Have A License To Operate In Florida? – A legal business has the license to operate in the state. If the Public Adjuster does not have the license to operate in Florida, they are of no good use to you whose damaged property is in the said state. Therefore, first and foremost, question them about their legal entity by asking them to see the license.

2. How Long Have They Been In This Line Of Business? – Nowadays, it is not unheard of for companies to have their fingers in different businesses. Hence, even if you have heard of the company name, don’t assume anything about their experience. It is best to question them straightforwardly about how long they have been in the claims business. A new firm will likely not have much to offer in terms of years of experience, but they might have been lucky enough to hire an experienced team. Even the reverse can happen. The company might be old, but the players involved, new. So, be point-blank in asking such questions.

3. Do They Have Any Experience With A Claim Like Yours? – Having experience handling claims is one thing, and having the experience handling claims like your another. Once you explain your situation, ask the prospective public adjuster whether they have handled anything similar in the past. If not, move on and keep looking. If yes, the next question to follow is quite apparent.

4. Can They Provide Local References? – If the prospective public adjuster claims to have experience handling claims like yours, ask them for local references. If they hem and haw, and fail to provide any worthwhile references, it’s best to look for someone else. If they’ve done a good job in the past, they should be able to provide references.

5. Do They Work In A Team Or Work Alone? – A lone ranger will have limited knowledge and limited resources. It would be best if you had an adjusting firm that works with a team. Together, their knowledge will only help your cause and improve the chances of getting the maximum possible settlement. They can even pool their knowledge and resources to expedite the claim settlement process.

6. When And How Do They Get Paid? – Ideally, the public adjuster will get paid only when the insurance company pays you. Then, too, their fee is a fixed percentage of the claim. If the public adjuster asks for their fee before the claim is settled, steer clear of them.

7. Who Will Prepare The Claim? – Sometimes, the public adjuster uses a third party to prepare the claim. The practice is not wrong, maybe they have too many cases to handle, so they outsource a part of their work. Nevertheless, if they try not to answer your question or fail to be upfront about it, you will always wonder what else they are hiding. Being able to trust the public adjuster is important. All you need is a guarantee that the person handling your claim is always in the loop and knows what is being prepared and filed regarding your claim.

8. Number Of Claims Being Handled By Them At The Time? – This little information comes especially handy when there is a catastrophe. If the number of claims being handled by the public adjuster is large, there are high chances that your claim may not get the attention it deserves. Even worse, the information could get lost, leading to unnecessary delays.

9. What Are Their Errors And Omission Policy? – In the insurance industry, the equivalent of malpractice insurance is the errors and omissions policy. It is a way of ensuring that if you suffer a loss due to the public adjuster’s mistake or negligence, they have the financial capacity to compensate you.

10. Will They Allow You To Remain Involved With The Claim? – It is your claim, and you should have some say in it. If the public adjuster does not keep you in the loop at all times, it is not right. Even if they prefer you don’t communicate directly with the insurance company, which is mostly the case, they need to keep you informed.

The Crux

When hiring a public adjuster, you have every right to question them, for you will be paying their fee. Ask as many questions as you can to clarify any doubts that you may have. The above few questions are only to get you started on the right track. If the public adjuster tries to confuse you with complicated jargon and does not give straightforward answers, don’t look at them twice. They can’t be trusted to do justification to your claim.

If you are looking for a public adjuster in Florida to help you with your claim, you should come to us. Continental Public Adjusters is a well-respected, trustworthy, and experienced public adjusting firm. We assure you of the best possible service at all times. Our aim is to ensure that you can talk to the insurance company on equal footing and get the maximum possible settlement with minimum trouble.