Hurricane Michael Q&A:
Contractors & Assignment of Benefits (AOBs)
“Is it common practice to get random phone calls from roofing companies saying they’re ‘coming by tomorrow to inspect your roof’ and ask how old it is, what type it is, etc.?”
OCTOBER 18, 2018 (PANAMA CITY, FL) – Florida Professional Law Group, a property claims law firm, warns those affected by Hurricane Michael to beware of unsavory contractors and to ask questions.
Florida Professional Law Group recently received the below inquiry from a Hurricane Michael client who had property damage. Please read this important Q&A if you have hurricane property damage.
Is it common practice to get random phone calls from roofing companies saying they’re “coming by tomorrow to inspect your roof” and ask how old it is, what type it is, etc.? I received a call and this roofer said they’re doing all the houses on my street. He was a very friendly sounding gentleman telling me he’s licensed, professional, etc. He said it’s a no obligation estimate, only after I asked him who sent him to me. I told him my attorney was handling that. He then offered a no obligation inspection first thing tomorrow morning and could bill our insurance company. I again told him my attorney was handling it and that I didn’t want to duplicate any efforts. I just don’t know how he got my cell phone number.
Unfortunately, this practice is common. Be careful about contractors who want to do work for you. Check references and be sure they are licensed. The above scenario describes a contractor who wants the homeowner to sign what’s called an Assignment of Benefits (AOB). Read AOB documents very carefully before signing one if you choose to go in that direction.
Hurricane Michael Property Damage & Assignment of Benefits
The contractor will bill your insurance company directly if you sign an AOB. This is a positive feature. You will not have to pay for the service out of your own pocket. However, the AOB document you sign should specifically state that it is limited to just the amount of benefits necessary to pay for the reasonable amount of work being done by that contractor. It should not be an outright assignment of all the benefits under your policy. Giving an assignment of all of your insurance benefits could end up leaving you with no benefits under the policy and allow an unscrupulous contractor to take all of the benefits from you. It could also give the insurance company an excuse to say that it doesn’t know who should receive the benefits and withhold paying money to anyone. The results could lead to a tragedy for a well-meaning property owner trying to recover from the storm. Many legitimate and reputable companies recommend AOBs for their clients, such as Florida Professional Law Group. Be sure that you are working with a reputable company when signing an AOB contract.
Hurricane Michael FEMA Grants & SBA Loans
Additionally, you should know that while FEMA grants and SBA loans can be important parts of disaster recovery, if an individual or a business has a loss that is not fully compensated by insurance or an insurance claim that is denied, you should consider consulting an experienced insurance law attorney. Amid the disaster, the insurance company or you may have overlooked details of the situation, or provisions of the insurance policy or the law, which could provide valuable coverage. Underpayments and denials can often be reversed when approached properly. Many insurance law attorneys will provide a free consultation and may handle the case on a contingency basis, meaning that there is no fee if there is no recovery.
Florida Professional Law Group specializes in property damage claims, including Hurricane Michael property damage claims. We are Attorney-Adjusters. Property damage insurance claims is all we do, all day, every day.
As Attorney-Adjusters we’re the only professionals that you need.TM Florida Professional Law Group helps individuals, businesses, and organizations navigate toward a fair insurance claim settlement with their insurance company. We service new, underpaid, and denied insurance claims. Our Attorney-Adjuster Insurance Claims Process covers the entire insurance claims process. This includes obtaining our adjuster’s complete estimate of your property damage and filing a lawsuit if necessary to get you a fair settlement.
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