October 4, 2016

Storm Damage Insurance Claims Tampa Fl – Morning Blend Interview

NATALIE TAYLOR: Summer is here, and of course, in Florida, that also means storm season. One of the many curveballs that nature can throw your way, which can affect your home and property. And if you’ve ever had to file a claim for damages, well you probably know how hard it can be to get reimbursed for your losses. That’s where it can be in your best interests to hire an attorney to help. I am joined today by Ted Corless, senior attorney for the Corless Barfield Trial Group. Good morning, Ted, thanks for coming in today. TED CORLESS: Good morning, thank you for having me. NATALIE TAYLOR: I was going to say, we hear so many crazy stories in Florida; I mean, from sinkholes— TED CORLESS: Right. NATALIE TAYLOR: —to hail damage. Storm damage. I had no idea that hiring an attorney to navigate the waters would be a positive step. TED CORLESS: Well, most of the time, the insurance companies has already engaged lawyers who are evaluating claims.  They’re looking at the facts, they’re comparing them to policy language; and if they’re doing that, then you have to do things to protect your own interests as well. NATALIE TAYLOR: And what’s unique about what you can offer is you’ve actually been on the other side; you used to work with some— TED CORLESS: That’s right. NATALIE TAYLOR: —of the other insurance companies. And now you’re helping those that are the policyholders. TED CORLESS: Right. We represented insurance companies at Corless Barfield for over ten years, and we—sorry, we were representing insurance companies for over ten years, and now for almost ten years, we’ve been representing, exclusively, homeowners and business owners. NATALIE TAYLOR: So you can really help the policyholders with the dos and don’ts, and maybe what to look for, and protect them, in a way. TED CORLESS: That’s right. In fact, we occasionally have to encounter policy language that we wrote— NATALIE TAYLOR: Really? TED CORLESS: —for the insurance companies when we were on the other side. NATALIE TAYLOR: And when this would happen, what should a person do? Say a tree goes through a roof. Are you the first caller? Or is the insurance company the first caller? Walk us through what people need to do if they’re faced with a situation like this. TED: Sure. Well, let me back up a little bit. Even before you make a claim, or even before you have damage, it’s a good idea, every year on June first, the beginning of hurricane season, to take your phone, and go around your house, and tape the condition of your house. NATALIE: I’ve heard of that, yes. TED: It’s really important thing to do. Because that way you have a history of the condition of your property, which oftentimes becomes the big issue for the insurance companies. When did that damage occur? And you have that now, with such ease, with a camera phone, especially. NATALIE: Say that’s accomplished, that’s checked off the list. Then, unfortunately, something negative happens. Who do you call first? TED: I mean, our recommendation is that you call us, because we give free consultations on claims, in advance of them filing them. And the reason for that is, sometimes, you’ll find that the way you present the claim can actually affect the outcome, d=simply by looking for coverage under a one provision, rather than another. Just those little pieces, those little details. NATALIE: And obviously, you made reference to knowing your own policy that you wrote when you were on the other side of things. You’ve also dealt with tons and tons of property loss damage. So you’ve got the experience on this side of things, as well. TED: Well, we’ve handled over a half a billion dollars’ worth of claims, about $250 million for policyholders, and $250 million for insurance companies. And so we have an understanding. And the other thing is we’ve taken these cases all the way to trial. We are a trial firm; in fact, one of our biggest growth areas are people who’ve hired other lawyers, and then their lawyers will come to us— NATALIE: Really? TED: And have us try their cases to verdict. NATALIE: Well, Ted, we talked about the do’s, and the things to be prepared. You’ve also seen the flipside, where there’s some things not to do. Can you help our viewers in that sense? TED: A lot of people are looking at their insurance policies to save money, or maybe are making to move to another insurance company. I recommend you do that before storm season. NATALIE: Oh, okay. TED: Do it sometime between December 1st and May 31st. Because that’s the time frame when there’s less storm activity, especially. NATALIE: Especially here. TED: It just seems like those are the people that end up in the best place. NATALIE: Well, thank you so much for your thoughts, Ted, I really appreciate it. And to find out more about Corless Barfield, and how they can help you, well go to their website, and check out their brand-new YouTube channel.