Thursday, November 8th, 2018, saw the kindling of the Camp Fire-which, just a few days later, has become the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in the history of California. The fire has terrorized Butte County for many days and continues to blaze through Northern California. As of the latest reports, the Camp Fire has burned 111,000 acres-including 260 commercial buildings and more than 6,450 residences. The devastating fire has resulted in 29 fatalities (all civilians) and at least 3 firefighter injuries. The Camp Fire has affected the communities in the following cities: Paradise, Magalia, Inskip, Oroville, Stirling City, Butte Creek Canyon, Chico, Concow, Forest Ranch, Helltown, Butte Valley, and Yankee Hill.
Some communities have been almost completely destroyed by the flames of the Camp Fire. Paradise, for example, accounts for a striking majority of the residencies destroyed by the fire. It is estimated that up to 90% of the community was charred by the fire.
Although 29 people have been confirmed deceased due to the fire, more than 200 people are still missing. Therefore, the death toll is likely to rise within the coming days.
Most of the people who evacuated their homes will undoubtedly have nothing to which to return. However, even those whose homes were spared by the flames of the Camp Fire might return to inhabitable homes-due to the smoke and ash left behind by the fire. Even homes that were never threatened by flames could have sustained extensive damage due to the smoke and ash.
Was your home damaged by the smoke and ash from the Camp Fire? Did you return to your home to unexpected fire damage? If so, you might have grounds to pursue a fire damage claim and receive compensation for the damage caused by the smoke and ash created by the Camp Fire. If you are a resident of Paradise, Magalia, Inskip, Oroville, Stirling City, Butte Creek Canyon, Concow, Chico, Forest Ranch, Butte Valley, Helltown, and Yankee Hill, or any surrounding areas affected by the Camp Fire, you might have grounds to file a smoke and ash claim.
Property Damage Due to Fire, Smoke, and Ash
What comes to mind when you think about fires? Most people only think about the flames of the fire and the possibility of structures burning to the ground. However, not all fire damage is burn-damage. Smoke and ash can cause a significant amount of damage to properties.
Learn more about your options for compensation by calling (213) 389-3765.
Smoke and ash could damage all of the following:
- Ceilings, walls, and windows
- Filtration systems (such as pools, artificial ponds, and hot tubs)
- Outdoor areas (such as yards, lawn, gardens, and any greenery)
- Personal items (such as furniture, family heirlooms, clothes, family pictures, etc.)
- Ventilation systems (such as air conditioning and heating systems)
Without a doubt, there could be extensive property damage caused by smoke and ash. If your property was damaged, do not hesitate to pursue a claim. You could recover some sort of compensation for the damage caused to your property.
Your Homeowner’s or Renter’s Insurance
Whether you own or rent your home, it is likely that you have some sort of insurance coverage that could apply. Insurance coverage for homes usually covers devastating events such as fires; therefore, those affected by any type of fire damage could find relief after filing a claim with their insurance provider. After filing a claim, the parties affected could receive many types of compensation. For instance, you could be compensated for replacement of your damaged property, cleaning of your damaged property, relocation costs (e.g. temporary rentals, hotels, motels, etc.), and any out of pocket costs resulting directly to the fire damage to your property. For many people affected by smoke and ash damage after a fire, thinking of their insurance coverage could provide them with peace of mind. However, insurance companies do not always make it easy for victims of property damage caused by fires to file claims and recover compensation.
Common Issues with Fire Damage Claims
Unfortunately, it is up to the insurance company’s discretion to approve or deny a claim resulting from fire damage, smoke damage, or ash damage. In many cases, insurance companies simply deny claims and refuse to pay claimants for the damage sustained by their properties. Some of the common reasons for denied claims include insurance companies believing that the damage is not extensive enough, that the damage was caused by a previous incident, or that the claim is simply false. Insurance companies lose a lot of money due to fires-especially wildfires. Therefore, it makes sense for insurance companies to be hesitant to approve fire, smoke, and ash damage claims.
After a claim is denied, claimants often look for other ways to rebuild and focus on recovering what was lost. Common options often include loans. However, many claimants never file appeals to the decisions made by insurance companies. In fact, many claimants never seek legal assistance at all.
If you encounter any difficulties with your smoke and ash claim, you might be in need of legal assistance. When you hire a smoke and ash attorney to handle your fire damage claim, you will be represented by someone with experience in handling these claims against insurance companies. When you hire an attorney, there will always be someone representing your best interests and aggressively fighting for your right to be compensated for the damage caused by the fire. Hiring an attorney to handle your claim could prevent the insurance company from unjustly denying your claim and trying to avoid paying you for your losses.
If you are interested in pursuing your smoke and ash claim against your insurance company with the legal assistance of a knowledgeable attorney, do not hesitate to seek legal assistance with our attorneys at your earliest convenience.
Call (213) 389-3765 to set up a free, no obligation consultation to find out if you have a case.
Important Steps for Pursuing a Claim against your Insurance Provider
Are you interested in pursuing a fire and ash claim against your insurance company? If so, there are a few steps that you could take to ensure that you have the tools necessary to pursue your smoke and ash fire damage claim. Consider the following recommendations:
- Take photographs. As soon as it is safe to enter your home, begin taking photographs of the damage. You should document all of your losses.
- Contact your insurance company. Contact your insurance provider and report your damage. The insurance company will send a representative out to your property to evaluate the damages.
- Collect supporting evidence. Gather records that show the price of your damaged property. If you no longer have access to physical records due to the fire, look for virtual records (i.e. email receipts, purchase history, bank statements, credit card statements). If you hire any professional services to clean the ash or smoke from your property, ensure to keep all receipts.
- Contact an attorney. Contact a law firm and speak to an attorney.
If you would like to learn more about what you could do to ensure that you could recover the compensation to which you are entitled, do not hesitate to seek legal assistance as soon as possible.
Our Lawyers are determined to Help You
Was your property damaged as a result of the Camp Fire? Was there smoke and ash damage to your home? If so, you might have grounds to pursue a claim against your homeowner’s (or renter’s) insurance company. Are you interested in pursuing a smoke and ash claim against your insurance company? If so, it is essential that you seek legal assistance as soon as possible. You must contact the smoke and ash lawyers at Downtown L.A. Law Group at your earliest convenience. Our law firm is dedicated to helping you and your family to recover the compensation that you deserve. Our team of experts will aggressively fight for your right to be compensated. Do not hesitate to contact our firm today.
You could benefit from our free consultations and free second opinions. During our free consultations and free second opinions, our smoke and ash damage attorneys will answer all your questions, address all your concerns, and guide you towards a successful property damage claim. It does not matter if you are interested in starting your claim or if you have already started your claim, our lawyers will provide you with all the information that you need to reach a successful claim outcome. Whether you are interested in a free consultation or a free second opinion, contact Downtown L.A. Law Group as soon as possible.
Our free consultations and free second opinions are available as part of our Zero-Fee guarantee. Because of our Zero-Fee guarantee, you will never pay any upfront legal fees for any of our legal services. Our firm is also strictly based on contingency; therefore, you will not pay anything unless you win. If you do not win, you will not have to pay for our legal services. If your home was damaged by the Camp Fire that continues to terrorize Northern California, do not hesitate to contact our law firm today.