When dealing with property insurance, it is essential to read through your policy carefully. One element that many property insurance policies contain is known as a “right to repair” clause as part of the Homeowner Claims Bill of Rights. In a typical insurance settlement, the claimant would receive a monetary amount to cover the cost of their losses, and they could hire a contractor at their own discretion. A right to repair clause is the exact opposite. Under this doctrine, the insurer determines the extent of your damages and then hires contractors that work for the agency to make repairs. Too often, the result can be inefficient work, a lack of control on the part of the claimant, and repairs not being done in a timely manner. Additionally, the contractors work for the insurance company, not for you. This can make it difficult to communicate your concerns regarding the quality of work being done to your property.
A right to repair clause grants the insurer total power over your claim. Many companies employ this doctrine because it ultimately allows them to save money and make decisions independent of a claimant’s wants.
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Important Notes About Right to Repair Work
If your property insurance policy contains a right to repair clause, it is essential to understand the full extent of what this means. One important note is the insurer is the guarantor for any work done on the property. If there are any repair issues, the insurance company is ultimately responsible for paying for further work. The contractors may also provide a guarantee for the work that they do, but in the end, it is the responsibility of the insurance company to make sure the job is done correctly.
Negotiating with Your Insurance Company
Depending on the details of your policy, you may be allowed to negotiate the terms of any work that is going to be done to your property under a right to repair clause. It may be worth mentioning that even if a right to repair clause is noted in your insurance policy, the insurer may not invoke this doctrine. Many insurance companies do not want to deal with the risks that come along with hiring their own contractors, fearing that substandard repairs may make them open to further liability. Yet, some agencies threaten the use of this clause to pressure claimants into accepting low settlements.
At the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine, we protect claimants who are dealing with uncooperative insurance companies. Whether your claim has been denied or undervalued, or if you are experiencing bad faith insurance practices, we can help. Our team can handle all the communications with your insurer while we negotiate for a resolution that benefits your interests.
For a free consultation, call us today at 1-800-747-3733.