Last Friday, September 1st, 2017, Los Angeles encountered its biggest fire ever – burning around 7,100 acres. The brush fire began scorching land in La Tuna Canyon, just north of Burbank, rapidly making its way through Glendale, throughout the Verdugo Mountains, and even by the 210 freeway. The 210 was closed that Friday and later reopened the following Monday, September 3rd, 2017.
The La Tuna fire ripped through Los Angeles, heating the city for 3 days. During the time, the nearby 1,400 residents were required to evacuate. The residents were allowed back home Sunday evening.
Out of the 1,400 residents, only 5 homes were completely destroyed by the fire. One of the residents that lost their home, had already lost their home back in 1979 – when his parent’s house on the same exact lot was destroyed by a kitchen fire. NBC news further reported that all that was left of the home was rubble, a few toolboxes, and a single, unbroken serving dish.
Apart from the 5 residents that lost their home, many others who live around the enflamed area, may still encounter property damage. Some examples include scarring, soot, and ash damage. Those surrounding neighbors may also want to seek compensation for the trouble of evacuating, losing possessions, receiving injuries during the fire, developing health risks throughout the fire, and for any fire damage that impacted their property.
Can a homeowner file a claim with their insurance after a fire destroyed their property?
While the answer involves a “yes,” it also involves a “no.” While filing a claim with your insurance may be the most reasonable idea, especially since every homeowner pays a residual/monthly fee on their policy, it would only seem right!
However, while seeking settlement for the damages from your insurance may seem beneficial, it would not be best to file the fire damage claim on your own. This is especially true for those who try filing the claim, and aren’t even insured under fire situations. When filing for such a large amount of injuries, damages, loss, catastrophic event, or for any huge settlement amount, you’ll need a trusted legal professional, like the fire damage attorneys here at JT Legal Group.
Why do I need an attorney for my fire damage claim?
Without having a trusted attorney to help defend your interests during this time of need, you may be subject to getting your well-deserved claim belittled with a very small amount, or even rejected – granting you no amount for your injuries, damages, or loss. Securing the assistance of a fire damage attorney will help assure your rights are protected.
1. Reviewing Your Policy
The first step a fire damage attorney will take is by first setting up a consultation to review your property’s insurance policy and decipher whether the extent was covered.
2. Sending a Private Adjuster
When insurance companies review the damages of a catastrophic event, they typically send out their own adjuster to examine the extent of damages. Here at our law firm, we have our own set of private adjusters. With our own professional adjusters, we can examine the extent of damages fairly and honestly. Unlike these insurance companies, they might try to belittle far less than what your claim may actually be worth.
3. Professionally Negotiating Your Fair Settlement
Without an attorney, you may be subject to receiving little, to nothing at all for your fire damaged claim. An experienced fire damage attorney will professionally negotiate your claim’s fair settlement amount by discussing this with your insurance provider.
Unlike these insurance companies, our firm is in business to defend your best interests. Don’t let these major insurance providers get the best of you, we can help. Contact our firm now if you, or a loved one, was effected by the La Tuna fire.
-- Jack Ter-Saakyan, Esq.
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