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Why would my hail damage claim be denied in Iowa?

Des Moines, IA – The state of Iowa is at an increased risk for hail damage. In 2021, Des Moines had 31 hail reports within 10 miles of the city center. Cedar Rapids had 45 reports of hail hitting the ground. In some cases, the hailstones reached 2.75 inches in diameter, approximately the size of a baseball, and caused extensive damages to houses and cars. Unfortunately, when Iowa residents try to recover damages, their insurance companies delay or reject their claims altogether. What can you do in such a situation? The most important thing is to reach out to an experienced bad faith insurance lawyer in Des Moines, and have them explain what your rights are and how to get the compensation you are entitled to. 

Is hail damage covered by homeowners insurance?

In most cases, a standard homeowners insurance covers damages caused by fire, wind or hail. The first thing you need to do is read your insurance policy carefully, to make sure there’s no hail exclusion in it. 

Many people wonder whether making a hail damage claim is really worth it. In case the damage is minimal and the cost of the repairs is less than the deductible you’d have to pay, then, no, there’s no point in filing a claim. You’re probably better off paying for the repairs out of your pocket. However, if your property sustained severe damage, you definitely want the insurance company to pay for the repairs. 

Why would my claim be denied?

The real reason is that insurance companies do not like it when they have to pay large sums of money. If a storm accompanied by high winds and hail wreaks havoc in a densely populated area like Des Moines, the insurance companies will be flooded with damage claims, so, naturally, they will try to pay as little as possible.

Obviously, they won’t tell you that. What they will tell you is that the damage to your property is not covered by your insurance. For instance, if the roof of your house is badly battered by hailstone and starts leaking, the insurance adjuster will try to claim that the underlying cause of the damage is lack of adequate maintenance and repairs. 

It’s a question of simple wear and tear, they’ll tell you, and this is not covered by your insurance policy.  Another commonly used tactic is to delay your claim to the point you give up and fix your house with your own money. 

If your claim is denied, they are required to send you a letter explaining the reasons your claim was rejected. Yet, such a decision is not final. Take that letter to a seasoned Iowa bad faith insurance lawyer and they will help you lodge an appeal. The insurance company is obligated to review your case. At this stage, your insurance claims lawyer can submit new documents supporting your claim. If you go in there with a tough lawyer by your side, there’s a good chance they’ll reconsider their position and give you the money. Why that change of heart? Well, if the insurance company unjustly denied your claim they know that your lawyer will sue them for insurance bad faith. If the case goes to court, the insurer risks ending up paying all your damages, plus your legal fees  

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