Being a victim of theft is never a pleasant experience. Someone has violated your personal space, stole personal belongings and damaged your property. Insurers are always on time when they withdraw our monthly premiums, so we expect them to be there for us when we file a claim.
Unfortunately, many insurance companies will offer you a deliberately low settlement or unjustly deny your claim, which will only make your situation more stressful. Your best course of action is to consult with an insurance attorney before you file a theft claim. An attorney can speak with adjusters on your behalf and ensure you receive the benefits you are entitled to under your policy.
Texas Insurance Attorney
Insurance has become an industry of greed and power. These corporations make millions of dollars off of policyholders but will often refuse to settle their claims with a fair settlement. By filing a theft claim with the help of LeMaster & Ahmed PLLC, you can rest assured you will receive what your policy affords you.
Ms. Ahmed and Ms. LeMaster have been advocating for the rights of policyholders for more than two decades. They will help you settle your insurance dispute and ensure your rights are protected. Call (832) 356-7983 to schedule a consultation. LeMaster & Ahmed PLLC represents clients in Montgomery County, Collin County, Dallas County, Harris County and Galveston County.
- Steps to Take Following a Break In
- Does My Insurance Cover Theft?
- Can I Sue My Insurance Company?
- Additional Resources
Steps to Take Following a Break In
Theft involves taking another’s property or services without permission or consent. This crime can take place anywhere, but home and business owners are especially susceptible. We all hope it never happens to us, but data from the FBI found theft occurs every 14 seconds.
Theft or burglary is a frightening experience that can leave you feeling vulnerable and lost, but it is possible to move forward. What you do following a break-in is crucial to protecting yourself and putting your life back in order. The first step you should take following a break in is a no brainer; Call the police. The police will investigate the scene and file a report, which is necessary for your insurance claim.
After the police give you the clear, you will want to take photos of the scene and keep a log of what was stolen or damaged. All this information will be useful when filing a claim with your insurance company. Before you file a claim, you will want to speak with an insurance lawyer. They can ensure you have all the necessary evidence to support your claim and that adjusters hear nothing but the facts.
Does My Insurance Cover Theft?
Whether or not your insurance pays for theft damage depends on the type of coverage you have. Most standard home policies will cover your personal belongings if they are stolen inside or outside your home. Whether you were jumped in the street or someone broke into your house, you will likely be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy.
There are a few exceptions and caveats to homeowner’s protection and theft claims. Some personal items cost more than others to replace, and for that reason, a standard home policy limits how much they will reimburse you for stolen or damaged high-value items. High price items like jewelry and collectables will be protected but only if you purchased additional personal property coverage.
Your insurance company may not pay for theft damages if you only have standard commercial property protection. Commercial property insurance generally comes in three forms: basic, broad and special, none of which cover theft damage. To be protected, you must have purchased additional crime coverage, which pays for damage caused by theft, robbery and other property crimes.
Can I Sue My Insurance Company?
You are granted rights as a policyholder by the Texas Department of Insurance. Some of these rights include the right to good faith practices and the right to sue your insurance company. Litigation is warranted if your provider has acted in bad faith. Examples of bad faith insurance practices include:
- Refusing to pay a claim without conducting an investigation
- Failing to provide a written explanation for a denied claim
- Failing to confirm or deny a claim in a reasonable time
- Denying a claim based on race, religion, color, national origin and other characteristics
An insurance attorney can help you determine if your situation is grounds for a civil suit. If so, you can ask the court for compensation that can include up to three times the cost of the original theft claim, attorney fees and any other economic damages deemed appropriate by the court.
Consumer Bill of Rights | Texas Department of Insurance – Follow the link provided to learn more about your rights as a policyholder. You can gain access to information about good faith practices, whether you have to provide irrelevant documentation to support a claim and find a list of classes protected from discrimination. The information is provided by the Texas Department of Insurance, the entity responsible for regulating insurance in the state.
Unfair Settlement Practices | Texas Insurance Code – Visit the Texas Constitution and Statutes website to read the chapter of the Insurance Code governing bad faith practices. Scroll to section 541.060 to find a complete list of bad faith acts. You can also gain access to other insurance laws such as hearing procedures, illegal advertising tactics and what is considered misrepresentation of an insurance policy.
Insurance Lawyer in Texas
Was your theft claim unjustly denied? Is your adjuster unwilling to negotiate a greater settlement? The attorneys at LeMaster & Ahmed PLLC are strong advocates for Texas policyholders. They will negotiate with adjusters on your behalf and represent you in court if necessary.
Call (832) 356-7983 to schedule a time to speak with Ms. Ahmed and Ms. LeMaster. Some of the areas we serve include The Woodlands, Plano, Houston, Galveston and Dallas.