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Do You Need a Hurricane Damage Lawyer?

Big Hurricane Damage to a House in Louisiana

Here on the coast of Louisiana, we are no strangers to hurricanes and large storm systems. As we enter hurricane season, hurricane damages from previous seasons are still very much alive in our memory – Laura, Ida, and Katrina, just to name a few – because of the sheer amount of damage, flooding, and chaos they created.

To discuss any aspect of your hurricane damage case in a free consultation call 504-483-3400 or contact us.

Not Always “Like a Good Neighbor”

Although an insurance company’s main objective is to process claims as fast as possible, settle, and get released from their obligation, after a large damaging weather system, they are usually overwhelmed with claims. But there is a fine line between being patient with your insurance company and being the victim of bad faith.

After a claim is made, your insurance company has a legal obligation to respond to your claim under a specific timeline. But as large, for-profit corporations, insurance does not always act “like a good neighbor,” despite the advertising. The insurance industry is always trying to find ways to mitigate financial exposure and hold on to profits. Consequently, policyholders often find themselves fighting to get their claim fairly settled after a hurricane.

Are You Seeing Red Flags?

If the insurance company has not responded to your claim in a timely manner, if you have settled but no check has been forthcoming, or if the company has come back with a partial or full denial, it may be time to get legal advice to discuss your options.

While insurance claims can be frustrating for everyone and require some patience, it is important to get the assistance of a hurricane damage attorney when claim disputes and bad faith practices arise.

If you have hit an impasse with your claim or suspect bad faith from your insurance company, a hurricane damage attorney can hold the company legally accountable for the benefits you are entitled to under your policy.

What Is Insurance Bad Faith?

In Louisiana, we have insurance laws that protect policyholders from bad faith insurance companies. Under Louisiana Revised Statute § 22:1973, insurance companies are legally obligated to process claims in a timely and efficient way and to make reasonable efforts to settle them fairly.

You may need the assistance of a hurricane damage attorney in New Orleans if:

New Orleans Streets Flooded After Hurricane Katrina

  • Your insurance company has not initiated an adjustment after 60 days of your claim or 30 days after your submission of proof of loss.
  • Your adjuster has misrepresented the terms of the policy.
  • You have received an outright denial of coverage.
  • The insurance company has failed to cover losses under your policy, and negotiations have not been fruitful.
  • The insurance company is disputing the source of your water damage, i.e., flood water must be from rising water, and regular coverage should cover water damage from wind or rain.
  • You have gotten a denial based on wear and tear or improper maintenance.
  • They are asking for a release on a claim or check, indicating it is full payment before you know the full extent of the damage – some storm damages take time to become obvious, and you don’t want to release them from benefits right away.
  • The insurance company is asking for a release before you have resolved disputes.

If your insurance company has acted in bad faith, they may not only be forced to settle your claim reasonably, but they may also be held liable for all attorney’s fees and other penalties.

How We Help You and Your Family:

From the start of the case, we will take the time to learn the details and take the right possible action to ensure the best possible outcome for you, your loved ones, and your property. We are from a family where taking care of people comes first. We will look at your case, and find out what we need to do to take care of you because that is what matters. Whether it is a settlement, mediation, or litigation, we will determine what is needed for your claim.

What You Do Need?

  • Photographs of your damage and any repairs that may have been done
  • A copy of your insurance policy
  • A record of the Property Title
  • Receipts – from contractors, for additional living expenses, or for anything hurricane damage/evacuation related
  • A list of damaged items and the value
  • Business records (if your claim is about your business)
  • A current lease agreement (if your rental property was damaged)
  • A log of any communication to or from your insurance company
  • A record of how long the property could not be used

What if My Hurricane Claim Has Already Been Denied?

You may have already tried to gain compensation without legal representation, only for the insurance company to deny your claim or not offer fair compensation. You may still have a chance to claim for damages — you just need an attorney on your case. Contact us for a free consultation so we can review your policy and understand your legal options.

Getting The Skilled Legal Assistance Of A Hurricane Damage Attorney

Suffering hurricane damage can be overwhelming enough. You should not have to fight for the benefits you are entitled to under your insurance coverage on top of that. Let us help you get what you deserve.

Our experienced hurricane damage lawyers in New Orleans diligently represent the legal rights of policyholders after a hurricane when their insurance company has acted in bad faith. If you are struggling with your insurance company after a hurricane insurance claim, call us at (504) 483-3400 or:

Plan for Emergencies

Click below for city resources and preparedness information.

NOAA is an agency that enriches life through science and alerts US residents about hurricane weather in your area. Our reach goes from the surface of the sun to the depths of the ocean floor as we work to keep the public informed of the changing environment around them.

In case of a storm emergency, you must make sure your family is hurricane prepared. The city of New Orleans has prepared a website for our residents to stay informed, make a plan and stay safe.Click the NOLA READY sign for the city hurricane resources page.

The Chip Forstall law offices advocate for the rights of wrongful death survivors, injured pedestrians, drivers, cyclists and more. Call us today for a free consultation.

PHONE   |    504-483-3400
FAX   |   504-483-3447

320 North Carrollton Ave, Suite 200

New Orleans, LA 70119

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