It has been nearly six months since Hurricane Ike made landfall. The damage that Hurricane Ike caused to many home and land owners throughout the Houston and Galveston area was tremendous. If you are one of the many who suffered a loss from Hurricane Ike, you have most likely made a claim with your insurance company in order to recover the funds needed to rebuild and repair your damage. A large amount of these types of claims have been settled in a timely fashion by the insurance companies. However, we are still getting calls from homeowners that are still waiting on the insurance company to pay them the money to repair their homes so they can move on with their lives. In fact, we are currently representing clients who, through no fault of their own, are still waiting for the money to make the necessary repairs to their home. Some of our clients have been out of their homes for nearly six months. These are cases where the damage to the clients’ homes was great and clearly caused by Hurricane Ike.
Insurance companies, no matter how big they are, must settle claims in a timely fashion and in good faith. If an insurance company has denied, underpaid or is not settling your Hurricane Ike insurance claim, you may be entitled to compensation in the amount of the original claim and possibly even more. The Texas Insurance Code has some teeth to keep the insurance companies from taking advantage of consumers and businesses alike. The Texas Insurance Code also imposes duties on your insurance company when handling your Hurricane Ike claim. Your insurance company has a legal duty to handle your claim promptly, fairly and without misleading you. If your Hurricane Ike claim has been denied, improperly delayed, or you have been misled, you have rights under the insurance code, in addition to other common law rights.
Despite the fact that the insurance code imposes these duties and provides very hefty penalties for insurers who engage in bad faith, we are seeing bad faith in the cases that we review more often than not. This is especially true if you still have an outstanding insurance claim related to Hurricane Ike.
Rather than trying to deal with the insurance company alone, we recommend that you contact one of our lawyers to discuss the facts of your particular dispute. If you are still awaiting your insurance proceeds for the damage that was caused by Ike, you probably have a situation where the insurer is engaging in bad faith. Currently, Abraham Watkins is accepting the following types of Hurricane Ike insurance dispute cases:
- improper denial of claims
- underpayment of claims
- bad adjusters, including aggressive, deceptive, or negligent practices by your insurance company
- improper calculation of deductibles
- living expenses
- bad faith