When disaster strikes your home or commercial building, who do you call? A common mistake people make is calling their insurance provider, but this seemingly small slip-up can cost you significant amounts of money and even potentially prevent you from receiving damage reimbursement from your insurance provider.

What many homeowners and building owners do not realize is that when you contact your insurance provider to file your claim, your insurance provider will hire their own insurance adjuster to handle your claim.

There are three types of adjusters: Insurance Claims Adjuster, Independent Claims Adjuster, and a Public Adjuster. In this article, you’ll learn the exact differences among them and why a public adjuster gives you the best advantage of receiving your maximum benefit owed.

What is an Insurance Claims Adjuster?

Insurance claims adjusters are staffed by your insurance company. Also known as an insurance adjuster, they are not independent, in fact, they are the complete opposite. They represent the insurance company, not you as the policyholder. Their main objective is to investigate the claim – It’s important to note that investigating a claim does not mean they are attempting to produce a reimbursement for you. Because they are in-house with your insurance company, they are going to try and find every reason not to reimburse you for damages.

Once you file a claim with your insurance provider, they will assign an insurance claims adjuster to your case and their investigation will begin. It will include:

  • Interviewing you (the claimant)
  • Interviewing any witnesses
  • Gathering documentation in the form of police reports, fire reports, and medical reports
  • Gathering photographs

An Insurance Claims Adjuster is:

  • Hired by your insurance provider
  • Representing your insurance provider
  • Performing an investigation on behalf of your insurance provider
  • Gathering evidence to potentially deny or low-ball your claim

What is an Independent Claims Adjuster?

Similar to an insurance claims adjuster, an independent claims adjuster represents the interest of your insurance provider. The main difference between the two is that an independent claims adjuster is not in-house, but rather, is a third-party. For example, if you file a claim with your insurance company, they might decide to hire an independent claims adjuster outside of their company if they are overwhelmed with cases or if they do not have in-house adjusters.

Once the investigation of an independent claims adjuster begins, it is the same process as an insurance claims adjuster.

The word independent is misleading because it can cause you to believe the claims adjuster is completely separate from your insurance company. While they are separate third-parties, they are still hired by your insurance company and therefore, representing the best interest of your provider, rather than representing you (the policyholder).

An Independent Insurance Claims Adjuster is:

This is a major concern for many flood and water damage victims. Oftentimes when homeowners experience a flood or water damage, they can no longer live in their home while repairs are being done. Some living expenses might be covered under your insurance policy during that time where your home is uninhabitable. This can include things such as meals, laundry, transportation, and pet boarding.

In order to increase your likelihood of having your living expenses covered, you’ll want to:

A third-party hired by your insurance provider

Ultimately representing your insurance provider

Performing an investigation on behalf of your insurance provider

Gathering evidence to potentially deny or lowball your claim

What is a Public Adjuster?

A public adjuster is a licensed and trained specialist that adjusts and recovers insurance claims for damage losses to homeowners, commercial property owners, and businesses. Public Adjuster works solely for the policyholder and not for the insurance company.

As a Top Public Adjuster in Los Angeles, Excel Adjusters works closely with you, the insured, to understand your ultimate goal, and to expedite your immediate needs.

Once you contact Excel Adjusters, we will:

  • Negotiate a Fair, Final and Reasonable Settlement for the Policyholder
  • Assess Building Damage
  • Provide Licensed and unbiased vendors for work that is needed
  • Review Insurance Policy Coverages & Water Damage Restoration Process
  • Evaluate Clients Compliance Responsibilities
  • Investigate and Measure the Extent of the Loss
  • Evaluate Replacement Costs and/or Depreciation
  • Assemble Business Equipment Claims
  • Assemble Support data for Loss of Income Claim
  • Prepare Documentation for Advance Payment Request
  • Evaluate Microbial Contamination (mold)
  • Assess Total Loss Claims and Review Insurance Estimates

A Public Adjuster:

  • Works solely for you, the policyholder
  • Negotiates a fair and reasonable settlement for your claim
  • Speaks with your insurance provider directly
  • Guides you through the entire claims process
  • Expedites your claim process

The Benefits of Hiring a Public Adjuster

The benefits of hiring a public adjuster to help with your insurance claim include:

We Know State Insurance Laws

There are different laws for negotiating claims for each state, which independent insurance claims adjusters are not familiar with if they are located outside of California. Public adjusters are local to where you live, so they know the insurance laws pertaining to your claim and can help you get the most money out of your insurance claim.

We Handle All Communication

Public adjusters can handle all communications on your behalf with your insurance provider, since we have Power of Attorney. This means there is less stress for you to deal with since your insurance company is legally required to speak with us. You can focus on moving forward with your life while we do the heavy lifting for you.

We Protect Our Clients

Public adjusters make sure their clients are not being taken advantage of due to the policyholder’s lack of experience in construction. At Excel Adjusters, we help protect clients and uphold the insurance company’s obligation to make proper payments to you, the policyholder.

We Ensure There Is No Hidden Damage.

Oftentimes damage to your home or commercial building may not be visible to the untrained eye. By hiring a public adjuster, we know exactly which inspectors to bring in to examine all potential damage and help maximize your insurance claim.

The Pitfalls of Working Directly with An Insurance Company

Working directly with an insurance company can be highly risky, especially if you do not have insurance policy experience. The cons include:

  • Confusion Leading To Costly Mistakes. Insurance companies and their corporate adjusters tend to minimize necessary repair costs and their payout to policyholders by taking advantage of the policyholder’s lack of experience. Additionally, they will often ask confusing questions in order to gather the responses that best fit their own needs. Again, both independent claims adjusters and insurance adjusters are hired by your insurance company, so they are serving the interest of the corporation rather than your needs.
  • Complex Policies. Insurance company policies are very broad and complex. Trying to understand these policies is the equivalent of learning a different language and therefore is very confusing if you are not familiar with the industry. At Excel Adjusters, we have more than 20 years of experience in working with insurance companies and studying their policies.
  • Limited Coverage Options Explained. Your insurance company is unlikely to disclose every single potential coverage option that has been triggered by your loss and damage, despite being required by law. As your public adjuster, Excel Adjusters will take the time to explain all of your potential entitlement options to you. We will review your policy in detail to make sure you receive your full entitlement.

Maximize Your Insurance Claim Los Angeles

At Excel Adjusters, we work for you. We specialize in residential and commercial property loss for water, fire, earthquake, flood, and theft. To this day, we have handled over 2,000 damaged property claims. Our highly trained team of professionals identify, quantify, and establish the full extent of your loss with your insurance company. Our experts relieve you of the intricacies and complex procedures that come with handling claims in English, Korean, Chinese, and Vietnamese throughout the entire process.

Excel Adjusters has a proven past in getting our clients the best settlement for the repair of damages incurred that you are entitled to under your policy.

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