What is a public adjuster and what do they do?
Public adjusters are insurance experts you can hire to handle your claim. Public insurance adjusters represent your interests. Insurance company adjusters represent the insurer. Their job is to ensure you get every dollar you are entitled to.
What is a public adjuster?
A public adjuster az will assess your home for damage and determine the amount of coverage you are eligible for under your policy. They will also calculate the cost of repair and document the loss. To negotiate a settlement, an adjuster will contact your insurance company.
Public adjusters are usually responsible for large and complex claims. It can be challenging to recover from a hurricane, for example. This is because you will need to file claims under different policies. You would file a homeowners, windstorm or flood insurance claim if floodwaters blew your roof off.
There are also tricky questions such as: How much water was caused by rain entering through the roof? And how much was flooding? The homeowner's policy would cover the roof-related water damage. A flood policy would cover flood damage.
Public adjusters can help you find the correct answers and make the most of each policy.
The pros and cons of employing a public adjuster
Hiring a public adjuster is not a good idea for every claim. These are the pros and cons of using a public adjuster to help you.
They might be able to get you a higher settlement. Employing a public adjuster has the advantage of having an experienced professional negotiate for the highest possible claim payout. They will help you to document all your losses and point out any potential damage that the adjuster from the insurance company might have missed.
These can help you save time. Filing a large insurance claim takes a lot of time and energy. You have to fill out forms and communicate with the insurer. A public adjuster might be a good option if you have a demanding job, are busy with your kids, or don't want the hassle.
They will help you navigate the claims process. Insurance policies can be complicated because they are filled with legalese and the nitty-gritty details. A public adjuster with experience can help you understand your coverage and the claims process.
They can assist you in resolving disputes. You can also hire a public adjuster to look at your case and negotiate a better settlement if you have not accepted the offer from your insurer.
These are not appropriate for all claims. You may save money by filing your claim on your own for small claims. If the potential payoff for a claim is too low, some adjusters will not even take on it.
Your policy limits your payouts. Public adjusters who are skilled and knowledgeable are not miracle workers. Public adjusters cannot get you more money than you are entitled to under your policy.
Imagine your home being destroyed by a fire. A public adjuster won't likely be able to get you the additional $50,000 of coverage if it costs you $200,000 to replace all your belongings, even though your personal Property Limit is only 150,000.
Their fee will reduce your payout. The fee charged by public adjusters is usually between 5% and 20% of the settlement. In some cases, however, you may be charged a flat or hourly rate. You may have to pay the fee for the time and expertise of the adjuster. Some states have caps on fees.
They are not available in every state. Public adjusters are not permitted to assist homeowners with their insurance claims in some regions of the United States. Public adjusters in Kansas are allowed to only work on commercial claims. In Arkansas, however, public adjusters are not permitted.
These scam artists are not always legitimate. Scammers are people who pretend to be public adjusters to take advantage of vulnerable individuals. These scam artists can be avoided by following the tips below.
How to find a competent public adjuster
Public adjusters may not all be equally skilled and experienced. It is essential to research the job before you hire one. These are some tips to help you get started:
- Refer to others. The National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters can help you locate adjusters in your locality.
- Verify that the adjuster is licensed to practice in your state. You can verify licenses online with many state insurance departments that regulate public insurance adjusters. (Please note that some states, like Alaska and Alabama, do not provide public adjuster licenses.
- Verify if there have been any complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau.
- If possible, ask for references and verify at least three.
- Before hiring an adjuster, read the contract thoroughly and are familiar with the fees.
- Avoid anyone who knocks on your door unannounced, asks for an upfront payment or presses you into signing a contract.