First-party Property Claims – Floods

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For Florida property owners, floods can be devastating. Floods will occur as a result of an overflow from an existing body of water or because of excessive rainfall.

Floodwaters will either gradually rise over the course of a storm or happen quickly as a result of a flash flood. 

Flood claims are normally handled through the National Flood Insurance Program that looks at flooding as two acres or more of land that is normally dry, or two or more properties that are covered or partially covered in mud or water. 

Additionally, Florida insurance companies are becoming notorious for trying to use loopholes in order to avoid paying your claim. The second you run into this problem, you should contact the Florida insurance claim attorneys at Stevenson Klotz.

What is Flood Insurance? 

The normal Florida homeowner’s insurance policy does not include flood insurance. You will need to purchase your flood insurance separately. The rates are set through the National Flood Insurance Plan, which sets national rates that don’t change between insurance companies or agents. 

Your Florida flood insurance should cover your building and contents in addition to any structural damage that may occur during a flood as well as loss to your personal property. 

Filing a claim for your Florida flood insurance can be complicated. There are filing deadlines that you must meet and specific paperwork that needs to be filed in order to start making your claim. 

How is Flood Damage Different than Water Damage in Florida?

Insurance companies in Florida and elsewhere, make it a point to differentiate between flood damage and water damage. 

Water damage refers to normal water accidents such as a broken pipe, appliance leak, or clogged toilets.

In Florida, flood damage refers to the water damage caused by a natural flood such as a heavy rainstorm, hurricane, and public water issue, etc.

What is the Difference Between a Flood Warning vs. a Flood Watch in Florida?

If you live in an area of Florida that is vulnerable to flooding; you should understand the difference between a flood warning and flood watch. 

If a Florida flood warning is issued for your area, this means that the storm is severe enough to have the potential to cause flooding. When a flood watch is issued in your area of Florida, it means that you should try to get to higher ground. Try to secure important things like important documents, pictures, and your insurance policies. 

It’s also wise to bring any outdoor furniture inside and, if you are able, get as many of your personal belongings as possible to higher ground. Disconnect all of your electrical appliances and turn off the main utility lines and circuit breakers. 

What Should I Do After a Flood in Florida?

After a flood, you should avoid walking through moving water and driving through areas that are flooded. If you’re stuck in your vehicle, abandon the vehicle, and get yourself to safety.

If your Florida property has been damaged by a flood, you need to start the claim process immediately. Make sure you document all the damage and make a detailed list of any loss to your personal property. The more evidence you have, the better.

When going back into your Florida property after a flood, you should take precautions to protect yourself. This includes sanitizing anything that was in contact with floodwaters and make sure to keep clean drinking water on hand 

If you are the victim of flood damage in Florida, you should contact one of our insurance claims attorneys at Stevenson Klotz Injury Lawyers as soon as possible so we can evaluate your case and advise you of the next steps you need to take.

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