Smoke and Ash Damage to Your PropertySmoke property damage claims in wildfires are due to smoke and ash damage, not the fire itself. The fire in La Tuna Canyona, for instance, has given off smoke and ash for many days; not only are these materials hazardous to breathe in, but they can cause lasting damage to your land and home if not properly cleaned. Smoke damage claims can be filed by homeowners that are in the vicinity of a wildfire or brush fire. In many cases, the outside of the house may look undamaged; however, the inside of the property may have suffered severe smoke damage. Examples of smoke, soot, and ash damage to property include
- Damage to swimming pools and hot tubs resulting from build-ups in filters and pumps
- Damage from soot to the lawn and other shrubbery on the property
- Smoke and ash damage to carpeting
- Smoke and ash damage to furniture and clothing
- Buildup of ash and soot in storm drains, attics, and crawl spaces
What if Insurance Adjusters Deny My Smoke and Ash Claim – Insurance Bad Faith:Under California insurance laws, home fire insurance companies owe claimants an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. Insured homeowners are able to seek not only actual damages sustained to their homes but punitive damages against insurance companies. If your home is damaged by the effects of the La Tuna Canyon fire, for example, and your insurance company did not do its due diligence in giving you a settlement to pay for cleaning costs and property reimbursement, you may have ample grounds for a lawsuit. The law requires insurance agencies to pay out a minimum amount in the event of property damage under homeowner’s insurance, and agencies will do everything they can to avoid that payout. Under this California law, an insurance company can be sued for both a contract claim and a tort claim. Insurance bad Faith is a claim against an insurance company that has failed, because of bad faith, to meet its fiduciary duties to the insured homeowner. Examples of actions by insurance companies which are interpreted as an act of bad faith under California include:
- Failure of an adjuster to notify homeowners of damage to the property after prompt inspection of the premises.
- Directly advising a claimant not to obtain the services of an attorney.
- Misrepresenting to claimants pertinent facts or insurance policy provisions relating to any coverage at issue.
- Not attempting in good faith to effectuate prompt, fair, and equitable settlements of claims.
- Failure to accept or deny claims in a reasonable time.
Southern California Thomas Fire Insurance ClaimsThe Thomas Fires raging through Southern California have displaced hundreds of people throughout the Santa Barbara, Ventura, Ojai, Carpenteria, and Santa Paula areas. It is currently California’s third-largest fire, but officials predict it is well on its way to becoming the largest California fire on record.
Get started today by calling (213) 389-3765.Many homes and businesses have been destroyed by the blaze. Rightfully, those people wonder if their homeowners insurance will cover their losses as they hope to rebuild everything they lost in the fire: their home, furniture, cars, clothing, and other things that hold sentimental value. As one might expect, insurance companies are less than willing to disperse the money for claims. If your insurance company is not willing to give you the payment you deserve, then you need to contact one of our attorneys. Here are a few tips on how you can increase your chances that your claim will be processed correctly: