- Our Property Damage Lawyers Manage Everything Your Fire Claim Requires
- Understanding Fire Damage and Related Compensable Losses
- Our Fire Damage Attorneys Know How Insurance Companies Work
- Our Fire Damage Attorneys Can Identify Your Covered Damages and Losses
- Our Fire Damage Attorneys Help Clients Fight Their Claims' Denial
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Our Fire Damage Lawyers
- What Should I Avoid During My Fire Damage Claim?
- Talk to Our Fire Damage Lawyers About Your Case for Free Today
Our Property Damage Lawyers Manage Everything Your Fire Claim RequiresAt Dolman Law Group, our property damage attorneys advocate for people in your situation. We can review your insurance coverage, document your damage, and do everything necessary to show the insurer that your losses fall under the liable policy. We know how insurance companies work, and we understand their policies. We deal with them every day. Our attorneys recognize attempts to undervalue certain losses, deny valid claims, and implement bad faith insurance practices. The insurance companies respect our team because of how well we understand their job. Just knowing we are handling a claim can make a difference sometimes. When you work with our team, you can rest easy knowing you're in good hands. We always represent policyholders, never the insurance companies. As our client, we intend to provide:
- A comprehensive review of your insurance policy
- Help with cataloging your damages and losses
- Support and guidance throughout the claims process
- An advocate who will handle your claim from start to finish
- Regular updates on your claim
- Access to your attorney and team to answer questions as they arise
- Protection for your right to compensation based on your policy's terms
- Someone knowledgeable about the insurance industry on your side
At Dolman Law Group, We Believe in Building Personal RelationshipsEvery client our property damage lawyers represent is important. Our team provides personalized services based on their needs and the facts of their case. We believe in building personal relationships with our clients. You are never just another number to us. When our team accepts a case, we assign an attorney to it. This is the attorney you work with throughout the claims process. You will have their personal cell phone number and email address, allowing you to call, text, or email them anytime you have a question or concern. They can also provide regular case updates, although you can also call and ask for one whenever you want.
We Offer Our Legal Support on a Contingency-Fee BasisOur team works based on contingency. We do not charge a retainer or ask clients to pay any other upfront fees. We understand you need to save money during this trying time. Instead of demanding hourly rates, we work using our firm's resources to build a claim, gather support, and pursue a payout for you. Then, our lawyers charge attorney's fees only after we win your case. You do not pay if we do not win.
Understanding Fire Damage and Related Compensable LossesAt Dolman Law Group, our property damage attorneys know how devastating a fire can be to your personal and financial security. We work with our clients to recover the compensation they need to repair their homes and replace their lost belongings based on their homeowners insurance policy terms. We can:
- Document your expenses and losses
- Prepare and file your claim
- Advise you on your options
- Examine the terms of your insurance policy
- Fight a claim denial
- Sue the insurer, if needed
- Take other steps to protect your right to a fair payout
Fire DamageFire damage often makes it difficult to catalog your losses. This is especially true if areas of your home are no longer stable following a catastrophic fire. Any structural damage, necessary replacement, or ruined items should fall under your homeowners insurance coverage. However, you will need to document the damage, necessary repairs, and losses. Our fire damage attorneys know how to show your covered losses and seek compensation from your insurer up to the policy's limits. We can manage each step of the way, handling your claim from start to finish. Alternatively, we can help if you run into an issue with your insurer or if it denies your claim.
Smoke DamageAs you already know, fire can wreak havoc on your home or business. Some of the damage doesn't even come from the fire, but rather, the smoke it creates. Smoke coats walls, gets into curtains and furniture, and can seriously affect your family's allergies. Many of these items may need professional cleaning, treatment, or replacement. Our team acknowledges smoke damage when managing your claim. We gather the evidence needed to document the cost of remediation, cleaning, or replacement. You should not have to live with a couch that smells like smoke for years following this type of disaster. Your insurer should cover the replacement cost.
Water DamageIt takes a lot of water to fight a fire. Experienced firefighters can often look at a structure and determine how much water flow they need based on their experience and knowledge of similar fires. According to Firehouse magazine, a one-story, single-family home could require up to 100 gallons per minute, even if only 25 percent of the building is in flames. A fully involved fire could require 400 gallons of water per minute. All this water is necessary to put out the fire, but it also causes significant damage to the home's interior. Flooring, walls, drywall, appliances, furniture, and personal belongings could all suffer significant damage. The water could even render certain electronics inoperable. Our attorneys know how to inventory these losses and calculate a fair settlement value for the necessary repairs and replacement costs. Water damage is the most expensive part of a fire-related claim in many minor and moderate fires. We believe your claim should reflect that.
Firefighting EffortsFirefighters may take additional steps to eliminate fires in the home's attic, walls, or roof. This could require cutting holes for ventilation, knocking out walls, kicking in doors, breaking windows, or taking other steps. The insurance company will generally consider this fire-related damage and cover repair costs. In some cases, these repairs could cost more than the damage caused by a relatively minor fire. However, firefighters do what is necessary to ensure there are no hot spots or other areas of fire before leaving the scene. Their top priority is keeping your family safe and preventing the spread to neighboring structures, followed by preserving personal property. Still, this may mean little when facing thousands of dollars in property damage. Our attorneys can document any firefighting damages as a part of developing support for your claim. We know how to identify these damages, show they occurred at the time of the fire, and seek compensation to complete the repairs.
Our Fire Damage Attorneys Know How Insurance Companies WorkThe team at Dolman Law Group has more than a decade of experience dealing with insurance companies. We know which companies operate in good faith and which ones don't. We also know what they generally cover based on a standard policy. Our team intends to:
- Review the liable policy and identify your coverage options
- Challenge any denials or lowball offers
- Make sure the insurer treats you with respect
- Comply with all insurance-mandated deadlines
Exclusions to Homeowners Insurance Policies Could Affect Your PayoutSome exclusions may affect your property damage claim. When it comes to fire damage, this usually relates to the cause of the fire. Most policies cover most causes, including accidents related to your own mistakes in the kitchen. However, they may not want to pay if poor maintenance, recklessness, or intentional actions caused the blaze or spread of the fire. For example, a grease fire caused by your poor cooking skills is likely a covered loss. However, a fire that occurs because of a ruptured gas line after an earthquake is not. Most standard homeowners insurance claims have earthquake exemptions. Still, you could have financial recovery options. You can learn more about those options during a complimentary review with our firm.
Our Fire Damage Attorneys Can Identify Your Covered Damages and LossesAfter reviewing your policy, our team can investigate what happened and identify your covered damage, necessary repairs, and property losses. Depending on the extent of the fire, water, and smoke damage, this could vary greatly from claim to claim. It is impossible to compare one fire damage claim to another, even those under similar circumstances. We help our clients document their covered losses and related expenses, seeking the compensation needed to return their property to its previous condition and replace damaged appliances, furnishings, and other belongings. We determine a fair settlement range for their claim and seek an appropriate payout from their insurer. In general, some broad categories of covered damages generally include:
Structural RepairsYour insurance policy should include coverage for any damage to your dwelling, including damage caused by fire, water, heat, or smoke. Depending on the location and severity of the fire, this could range from weakening walls to full collapse, damage to trusses and rafters, or buckling flooring. Fires are a common cause of catastrophic and total loss damages. Our team knows how to help clients understand the possible repair, renovation, and remediation costs of restoring their property to its previous state. We can fight for compensation for your covered damages up to your policy's limits.
Furniture, Appliances, and Personal PropertyWhile fire can certainly damage any part of the interior or exterior of your home, water and smoke damage also do extensive harm to:
- Important legal documents
Temporary RelocationFire, water, and smoke damage may make it impossible to live in your home for several weeks or months. During this time, you will need to pay your mortgage payment or other bills while also covering the cost of rent. Thankfully, many homeowners insurance policies cover temporary relocation costs. They usually pay for renting an apartment or house up to the liable policy's limits. Additional covered expenses could include many expenses you would not have if you could live at home. Pet boarding fees, additional commuting costs, laundry costs, and similar expenses could also contribute to your settlement's value.
Our Fire Damage Attorneys Help Clients Fight Their Claims' DenialSometimes, an insurance company will deny a claim despite the policyholder's legitimate right to damages. If this happens, we encourage you to contact our attorneys as soon as possible. We can fight for the coverage your policy terms promise after a devastating fire. When an insurance company denies your property damage claim, it must notify you in writing. In this letter, the insurer must explain the reason for the denial and what you can do if you disagree. At Dolman Law Group, we see letters like this all the time. We can review your notice and discuss why the insurer refuses to offer compensation. Some reasons for insurance claim denials include:
- You missed a filing deadline set in your policy.
- You failed to pay all premiums to keep your policy current.
- The insurer believes you lied, misrepresented, or falsified your claim.
- The insurer wants more or different documentation of the fire.
- The damage occurred because of an excluded cause.
- Someone else's negligence caused the fire.
- The insurer believes the fire was intentional.
- The damage occurred to an undisclosed addition or renovation.