- When you first talk to your insurer, ask for the name and number of the adjuster who will handle your claim. It may be possible to deal with this person directly, making communications smoother. Keep notes on all conversations with the insurer, including names and numbers of everyone you talk to.
- Also ask the insurer for a list of companies authorized to make emergency repairs. Again, this will allow you to deal directly with the repair folks, and they will already know your insurer's procedures and paperwork requirements. Rushing to hire an unauthorized repair firm could lead to troubles, such as not getting full reimbursement for any payments you made without the insurer's approval.
- Document all damage. Take photographs and get copies of reports filed by police, firefighters or other emergency responders -- especially if the storm damage was followed by looting or vandalism.
- Eyewitness accounts from friends and neighbors can also be useful later, especially if emergency work will change the scene before your adjuster arrives. Take notes on damage and pull together receipts you have that can confirm the value of items damaged.
- Be present when the adjuster looks at the damage. Provide him or her with a written list of damage and items lost. After a major event such as a hurricane, it may be nearly impossible to get a second visit, so be sure the adjuster's list is complete the first time.
How to Get the Insurance Money Due You After Storm Damage
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