WHAT IS A PUBLIC ADJUSTER:
- A Public Insurance Adjuster (PIA) represents YOU — the policyholder—prepare, present and settle a home or business property insurance claim. A qualified PA has specialized expertise that can simplify and speed up the complicated, time-consuming process for settling a claim for property damage from fire, windstorm, hail, floods, hurricanes, and other disasters.
- A PIA works only for YOU — not an insurance company, not a roofing company, not a repair company, or general contractor. Hiring a PA is an important protection for your rights as a policyholder.
- Public Insurance Adjusters are licensed by the State of Texas to represent policyholders as their claim advocate. When handling your claim for property loss, insurance companies use their own licensed claims adjusters or sometimes contract with licensed independent adjusters. Their job is to represent the insurance company’s interests. The Public Insurance Adjuster focuses only on YOUR interests.
WHAT IF MY CONTRACTOR OFFERS TO HANDLE MY INSURANCE CLAIM:
- It is against the law for contractors – including roofing and restoration contractors – to negotiate your claim with your insurance company. Contractors may not hire adjusters to handle your claim.
Insurance adjusting—especially public adjusting—requires special training and a license issued by the Texas Department of Insurance.
- Insurance policies require the policyholder (YOU) to document and prove your loss to the insurance company. Few people have the necessary expertise or experience to meet that burden.
WHY HIRE A PUBLIC INSURANCE ADJUSTER:
- A Public Insurance Adjuster understands insurance policies. A PIA knows about things like current replacement costs, property repair, business income loss, and other elements of property loss that are critical to getting a fair and proper settlement.
HOW MUCH DO PUBLIC ADJUSTERS CHARGE:
- A responsible Public Insurance Adjuster usually bases his or her fee on a percentage of the final settlement—based on the time, energy, and expertise required to effectively represent you. Important: In Texas, a PA’s fee is capped at 10% of the settlement of the claim.
- Fees are negotiable. They are usually based on the size, location, and complexity of the property loss. Some public adjusters charge flat or hourly rates, but the total fee may not exceed 10% of the settlement you receive from the insurance company.
Much like accountants, realtors, and other professional consultants, public Insurance adjusters offset their fees in the time they save their clients and in the amount of the claim recovery. The public adjuster does not receive a fee until the insurance company pays your claim.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT MY PUBLIC INSURANCE ADJUSTER TO DO:
- Carefully review your insurance policy. Insurance policies can be long, detailed and difficult to understand. Policies can change from year to year and often require that insurance claims meet specific conditions. Not meeting the conditions can result in your claim being denied or reduced payments for the property loss. A Public Insurance Adjuster makes sure that a claim meets all the requirements of your policy.
- Thoroughly document your loss. The Public Insurance Adjuster should prepare your claim, including all estimates, inventories, photographs, and other factual information that is required to prove the extent of your loss. They can inspect your property loss and submit proof of loss to your insurance company.
- Work with the insurance company adjuster to agree on the proper amount owed to you. Usually, the Public Insurance Adjuster and company adjuster settle the claim without controversy.