When it comes to recovering financially from a loss, hiring a public adjuster is a smart move. A public adjuster is a claims assistance professional who works only for the insured, not for the insurers. They are there to help you maximize the amount of money you will receive for your claim and minimize or eliminate out-of-pocket costs. Public adjusters know how much your damages are worth and what can be included in your claim.
They can also help you understand your coverage, manage a complex claim, and keep your claim going. In some cases, having the participation of a public adjuster helps to process the claim more quickly as they know the process and work with insurance companies all the time. However, there will likely be more back and forth negotiations between the public adjuster and the insurance adjuster. If you have problems with your insurer, or if your personal or professional situation makes it difficult for you to manage all the details, you can hire a professional to help with claims.
In most parts of the United States, today, you can hire an authorized public adjuster at a “contingent” (percentage) fee who will handle your claim and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. Basic terminology such as actual cash value, business interruption coverage, restoration period, and replacement costs are just some of the terms you are expected to understand when resolving a claim on your own. Since you most likely don't have specific experience with property claims, hiring a public adjuster can greatly increase the settlement amount of your claim. A public adjuster is there to think and negotiate on your behalf. If you go directly to a lawyer, your lawyer will likely hire a public adjuster to investigate the claim. For example, if the claim is resolved and additional damage is discovered during repairs, you may want to hire a public adjuster to assess the total cost. Visit United's policyholder claims help library, read your policy and endorsements (extras), and be sure to review the policy with any public adjuster you're considering hiring before hiring them.
If you think your insurance company is neglecting you (they don't respond to your calls in a timely manner), it would be wise to expand your team to include a public adjuster. Insurance agencies generally understand the desire to hire an additional lawyer and respond in a professional manner when hiring a public adjuster. For any home insurance claim, a public adjuster can point to the money in the claims that you are entitled to and that you didn't even know about. After all, you can't expect the landlord to be an insurance expert. So if you have experienced a fire in your home or business, immediately contact a trusted public adjuster licensed in your state.