Why should I consider using a public adjusting firm such as Loss Settlement Services? 

Remember, although your insurance company may represent that they are there to protect and restore your interests following a loss, ultimately their agenda is to minimize monetary loss to the company.  In an effort to do so, the insurance company will oftentimes overlook the extent of the damage, under-estimate the cost of repairs, or agree to repair only the actual damages without regard for continuity of items such as painting, flooring, roofing,  etc.  The experts as Loss Settlement Services will carefully prepare and present your loss in its entirety, then advocate on your behalf to ensure that you receive fair compensation from the insurance company in order to return your property to its pre-loss condition.

When should I call Loss Settlement Services? 

Loss Settlement Services should be the first call you make, even before you report the damage to the insurance company.  Once the insurance company has been notified of the damage, any incorrect or incomplete information given, no matter how insignificant it seems, may compromise your overall claim settlement.  However, it is never too late to call Loss Settlement Services to assist you with your claim.  Wherever you are in the claims process, we will meet with you, under no obligation, to review your damage and recovery efforts, and come up with a plan that best suits your specific circumstance.

What fees are associated with hiring Loss Settlement Services? 

Loss Settlement Services, like most public adjusting firms, charges a fee based on a percentage of the total settlement recovered, not to exceed ten percent.  The fees are billed as the checks are released from the insurance company, so typically the client will be billed in phases.  It is important to recognize that fees are based on the total settlement.  This includes any payments issued prior to the involvement of Loss Settlement Service, as oftentimes more work is required of a public adjuster when they are not involved from the onset of the loss.  Please also note that the fees associated with hiring a public adjusting firm are usually offset by the increase in settlement amount, which averages approximately 4-7 times the amount of the initial settlement offered by the insurance company on a given claim. 

How long can I expect the claim process to take?

Each claim is unique, and the length of the claims process will depend greatly on the extent of damage and complexity of the claim.  Just as each claim varies, so do the attitudes and personalities of the insurance company representatives.  While some company-assigned adjusters will do their best to process your claim quickly and effectively, unfortunately there are no guarantees.  

Will my claim take longer to settle with the involvement of a public adjusting service? 

The answer to this is maybe.  Again, the length of the overall claims process will be at the determination of the complexities of the claim as well as the personalities involved in adjusting the claim.  It is also helpful to remember that as insurance companies want to minimize their monetary loss, it may be more difficult to convince them to part with additional recovery funds.  The negotiation efforts of a public adjusting firm such as Loss Settlement Services in reaching the maximum recovery on your behalf may require additional time and documentation as to assist the company in understanding the full scope of a loss and the necessity of additional funds they may have failed to account for.

What if an agreed settlement cannot be reached with the insurance company? 

There are situations when an agreed scope of damages and/or value of said damages cannot be reached with the insurance company.  In such cases, a recommendation will most likely be made to bring the claim to appraisal.  Demanding appraisal is a means of resolving such a dispute between the policyholder and the insurance company.  During the appraisal process, each party elects an appraiser (in addition to any involved adjusters) to represent the claim to a neutral, third-party umpire.  The umpire will then make the final assessment of the damages and issue a binding determination of the value.  Note that not all insurance policies recognize the insured’s right to demand appraisal. 

What if a third party (i.e. engineer, appraiser, attorney) needs to be brought in to either assist in determining difficult aspects of the claim or to defend/justify the scope and value of the damage? 

Although some insurance policies contain the necessary endorsements to cover third party expenses as needed to address the more difficult aspects relating to a claim, it is not common to find such coverages within a typical policy.  Depending on the circumstances, coverage for these professionals may be agreed upon with the insurance company when deemed necessary to determine the actual scope of the loss.  Ultimately, however, the policyholder should be prepared to take responsibility for all fees associated with any third parties as hired to make a case on the policyholder’s behalf.  Loss Settlement Services may advise that a third party be retained anytime it is believed to be in the best interest of the policyholder with the anticipation of bringing monetary gain to the overall settlement of the claim.