Fire Loss Claim in Portugal? Important procedures when dealing with an Insurance Company
If your home has been affected by a Fire Loss it will be one of the most dramatic and difficult situations that can happen to your property.
Seeing your home burnt down, either totally or partially, is always an extremely difficult time. We are faced not only with the loss of a physical space, but also the loss of memories, moments and personal items that home contained. In these challenging times, it is critical to seek professional support and guidance to navigate the aftermath and insurance process in order to begin to rebuild and reclaim what has been lost.
In situations such as these, the process of dealing with the insurance company can be complex and unfamiliar to you. This is why we, at C1 Broker, offer you information that will help you to easily deal with the claim procedures and calmly face the legal consequences and related procedures; in order to avoid the possible errors that arise from not having the necessary information, thus providing you with validated tools to approach this difficult step in a conscious manner.
In this post we would like to share with you all the essentials about the handling of a fire claim with your insurer: from how to deal with it to the documentation, requirements or how to seek legal guidance – understand the basics of the subject right here!
We understand that this is a very stressful time, but we would like to explain the handling procedure for this type of claim as simply as possible
HOUSE CLAIM – STEPS TO APPLY FOR COMPENSATION
1. The first thing you should do is contact the insurer to register the incident immediately and arrange a technical visit to assess the damage. To do this, simply call your agent or broker.
2. The insurance company will send an Adjuster to assess the damage. This visit is necessary to determine the extent of the damage and to calculate the cost of the claim. It is important that you are present during the technical visit to answer any questions or doubts that the surveyor may have.
3. After the visit, the insurance adjuster will draw up an initial report and may ask for documents, photos or quotes. Fire claims are different from the usual ones, more complicated and with a longer resolution period, due to the technical complexity of the claim and the reconstruction of the home. The loss adjuster issues a first expert’s report, in which he makes an approximate assessment of the loss. This is not the usual system of an initial report followed by a final report, but rather a living report with several advances.
4. The insurance company makes you an offer of compensation, based on the expert’s report. In the case of burnt houses, the compensation will be to rebuild the house instead of buying a new one.
5. Uninhabitability – If the house was your primary residence, you can claim additional compensation, such as hotel stays or for renting a flat or house while your home is being rebuilt. However, this does not apply if the home was your secondary residence.
- The expert’s report must establish whether or not uninhabitability exists.
- Depending on the Insurance Policy contracted, the client has at his disposal the uninhabitability cover and can use it to go to a hotel or rent a flat. It is necessary to check the policy in question, but normally it has a maximum duration of one year and there are certain limits on the amount that in any case must be negotiated with the loss adjuster.
FIRE CLAIM – What can you do to expedite the process?
To help expedite the processing of your claim, you need to provide the following information to your broker:
- photos of before and after the fire,
- deeds to the house,
- certificate of your bank account,
- estimates for cleaning up the area,
- repair estimates,
- Inventory list of the burnt objects with their approximate value. (The loss adjuster requests lists and invoices of the contents to determine their pre-existence. CAUTION!!!!! Issue very simple lists showing furniture, electrical appliances, etc… check if there are special objects declared in the policy or with a unit value of more than 6000 euros. Our recommendation is not to put specific values on the list, so as not to place yourself in an unfavourable position.
In addition, please let your broker knows if it was your primary residence or a holiday home. Your prompt response will ensure a timely resolution of your claim.
In all cases, remember that it is important to inform the insurer as soon as possible to avoid delays in the claims process.
After the expert’s visit, the insurance company may ask you for further information or additional documents.
Fire Loss Claim – Appointing your own loss adjuster
You can also appoint your own loss adjuster to carry out an independent valuation of your property. If you are interested in carrying out this type of claim handling (mediation between the insurance company’s loss adjuster and yours) we recommend you to read our specific post on “Appointing your own loss adjuster” as it is a complex process and we need to understand it in detail, its advantages and possible disadvantages.
If you have experienced a fire claim or any other type of home claim, it’s important to ensure that you have all the information you need to move forward. That’s why we recommend checking out our article on Home Claim, which is a valuable resource for anyone dealing with a home-related insurance issue. It provides helpful tips and guidance on how to navigate the process and ensure that you receive the best possible outcome.
In fire loss situations, where you are faced with both the loss of physical space and the loss of memories and personal belongings, it is necessary to seek support to help you cope easily. We understand that this is a difficult time for you, and if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact C1 Broker, leading insurance brokers in Portugal.
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