Roeder Smith Jadin, PLLC
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Insurance claim denied?

Few experiences of owning a home are more frustrating than having an insurance claim on your homeowner's policy denied. It is likely that your home either suffered some form of external damage from weather, such as hail or wind damage. Maybe there was some other problem, such as a grease fire in your kitchen or your water damage from the water hoses on your washing machine hoses failing while you were away from your home.

These are the types of claims most homeowners policies should cover, but if your damage claim is denied, you need to figure out why and respond to that denial. Your insurance company is required to explain why they have denied a claim, and the denial letter should contain specific information, such as the claim is a type not covered by your policy.

If for instance, the claim falls under one of the policy exclusions, it should specify that section of the policy. One of the most common exclusions is for flood damage. If your home was damaged by water from a nearby lake or watercourse, a standard homeowner's policy would not cover that damage. You have to flood insurance from the federal flood insurance program to compensate you for such a disaster.

Another issue can arise if you have items like very expensive jewelry, guns or camera bodies and lenses. You typically are required to have a separate rider, if one is offered by your insurer, to protect against the loss of these items.

However, if you have read your policy, understand it and believe you submitted a valid claim and the company is denying improperly, you may need the advice of an attorney.  Insurance contracts can be complex and not easily understood. 

An attorney can explain what is necessary to demonstrate a bad faith insurance claim, and they will be able to offer advice on whether your claims appear viable.

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