What Is A Public Adjuster? When To Hire One?

When a homeowner has suffered a devastating loss of their property after a severe weather event, pipe burst, or other catastrophe, then it is important to know how to file an insurance claim. Damage to your home can be traumatic and cause many other immediate stresses: finding alternative housing or an alternative location to run your business, trying to maintain your family’s sense of normalcy during the disruption, etc. The catastrophic event may have even caused injuries that a homeowner might be dealing with on top of the property damage or have created medical concerns due to not having access to their home.

All of these issues add frustration to the plate of an already stressed-out policyholder who is wondering if their homeowner’s insurance will alleviate any of their frustration.

A Public Adjuster Is An Advocate for the Homeowner, Not the Insurance Company

When a homeowner finds themselves in this situation, they can turn to a public adjuster who is an advocate on their behalf. In most ways, they do the same things that the adjuster for the insurance company does; that is, they evaluate the damage, come up with a total cost for repairs, and support that number with the evidence they collect. However, an insurance adjuster works for an insurance company and is loyal to them. A public adjuster is not affiliated with any insurance company and is only concerned with getting the right settlement amount for their clients.

Tips Before Hiring A Public Adjuster

When working with a public adjuster, you will be putting a lot of trust in them. They will be spending a lot of time and labor reviewing reports, negotiating on your behalf, and documenting evidence to support your claim. Having your home damaged can be emotionally traumatizing, so it’s important to pick a public adjuster that you feel comfortable working with throughout this devastating time. Hope Public Adjusters offers some suggestions on what to ask public adjusters you are interviewing to find the right person and help you narrow down who you want to work with.

References

Public adjusters are used to being asked for references. You will want to ask about other homeowners your public adjuster has worked with or read client testimonials on their website.

Experience

Ask how many years of experience they have been practicing in your area. Also, ask if they have experience with homeowners facing similar issues.

Fees

Public adjusters charge a percentage of the overall settlement that their clients receive. You should be clear about how your public adjuster expects to be paid and how much. Many states mandate how much a public adjuster is allowed to charge. For example, public adjusters are not allowed to charge more than 10% of the total settlement they get on a client’s behalf, according to the state statutes.

Perpetual Self-Improvement

Like any other profession, public adjusters can be committed members of trade organizations and professional associations that are committed to education and progressing the field. While attendance or membership is not necessary, a professional public adjuster is always seeking ways to improve their practice. They do this by updating themselves on the laws and policies that can affect their practice and are open to discovering advanced methods to meet the needs of their clients.

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Scott

Philosopher, writer, bad-pun maker and enjoyer of novelty. I enjoy bikes, video games, and beer all at the same time. When it comes to reading, I can and do.

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