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PREMIUM PAYMENT RELIEF

SINKHOLE DAMAGE CLAIM PROCESS

SINKHOLE DAMAGE INSURANCE CLAIM

Natural sinkholes occur when bedrock is dissolved by water, causing the ground above it to collapse. The bedrock typically consists of carbonate rock, such as limestone or dolomite. Rocks that readily dissolve in water are called karst.

A sinkhole form when water falls onto an area composed of easily-dissolved rock and the water cannot drain out. Water absorbs carbon dioxide as it seeps through the soil. The carbon dioxide makes the water mildly acidic. The acidic water collects inside the rocks, which dissolve and create a depression. In some cases, the ground above a sinkhole collapses very slowly. In others, the ground collapses abruptly, causing a catastrophic failure of any structure that lies above.

 
 

SINKHOLE INSURANCE COVERAGE

Nowadays, most small businesses that purchase commercial property policies choose "all-risk" policies. These policies cover loss or damage caused by any peril that is not specifically excluded. In most parts of the United States, sinkhole collapse is not an excluded peril.

While they may not exclude sinkhole collapse, many property policies do contain a general collapse exclusion. This exclusion applies to property that abruptly falls down or caves in, loses its structural integrity, or cracks, bulges, or sags. The collapse exclusion in many policies contains an exception. This exception gives back coverage for the collapse of property that is caused by any of the specified causes of loss. Sinkhole collapse is typically included as a specified cause of loss. Thus, the collapse of covered property caused by a sinkhole collapse is generally covered.

Nowadays, most small businesses that purchase commercial property policies choose "all-risk" policies. These policies cover loss or damage caused by any peril that is not specifically excluded. In most parts of the United States, sinkhole collapse is not an excluded peril.

While they may not exclude sinkhole collapse, many property policies do contain a general collapse exclusion. This exclusion applies to property that abruptly falls down or caves in, loses its structural integrity, or cracks, bulges, or sags. The collapse exclusion in many policies contains an exception. This exception gives back coverage for the collapse of property that is caused by any of the specified causes of loss. Sinkhole collapse is typically included as a specified cause of loss. Thus, the collapse of covered property caused by a sinkhole collapse is generally covered.

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ENGINEERING,  CERTIFICATION AND APPRAISALS

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER

Our Engineers will investigate damage to roofs due to design problems, construction deficiencies, excessive loading, weather and seismic events, mechanical damage, maintenance issues and other causes. Haag has a nearly century-long track record of analyzing damage caused by weather phenomena, including hail, snow, ice, wind, storm surge, flooding, lightning, tornadoes, and hurricanes. Currently, in addition to our forensic evaluations, we offer desaturation, core removal and other types of laboratory analysis through our Research/Testing Department. 

PROPERTY APPRAISAL

The home is inspected for structural integrity and to estimate how many years the home is likely to last. Appraising the condition of a home is usually a lender requirement during the sale of a house, but it’s also useful for existing homeowners who want to stay on top of home repairs. You can assess the condition of most roofs without climbing on the roof.

PROPERTY ATTORNEY

You need an insurance lawyer, even if you only want what is fair, because the insurance company rarely plays fairly. While they tell you they are “investigating” your claim, sending an adjuster out to document damage, or asking for records or receipts, they are often trying to find everything they can and use everything they find to DENY YOUR CLAIM.  In the background, they are hiring experts (many of whom they have hired a hundred times before because their opinions are always favorable for the insurance company) to form opinions that allow them to say your damage is excluded. 

 
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HOW CAN WE HELP?

The initial contact with your insurance carrier is critical. This contact can be the difference between your claim being paid or getting denied.
Differentiating between belongings and property that can be repaired vs replaced can be overwhelming.
The many requirements and the extent of the damage all come into consideration at this point in your hurricane damage insurance claim. It’s hard to properly calculate what amount will effectively cover all the damages to your home. It may seem like the insurance carrier paid you enough. In reality it could require so much more to repair your home and bring it back to Pre-loss condition.Let us help represent you and help you navigate your hurricane damage insurance claim.

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