Business Property Claims in Texas
HOUSTON COMMERCIAL INSURANCE CLAIMS ATTORNEY
Businesses may experience property damage from natural disasters like Hurricane Harvey, a wildfire, electrical fire, arson, tornado, hailstorm or other catastrophic event. Most businesses have insurance policies to protect them from these types of insurance losses. If unexpected damage or loss to your business property occurs, you should expect your insurer to act reasonably and make your business whole again. Businesses should file first-party claims with their insurer in the event of a loss to be compensated for property damage and loss of income. If your insurance company delays, underpays or denies your insurance claim, you should immediately contact an experienced business insurance claims attorney.
If your insurance company disputes your commercial insurance claim, your business may have to file a first-party lawsuit against the insurer to obtain the insurance benefits due under the policy. Contact a commercial property insurance claims attorney experienced in handling first-party business insurance claims. At Wyly & Cook, PLLC, based in Houston, Texas, we are committed to helping small businesses with first-party commercial insurance disputes.
INSURING AGAINST UNANTICIPATED LOSSES
Most businesses try to protect themselves against unanticipated losses by having business property and casualty insurance policies. Filing a claim with your own insurance company after a commercial property loss is known as a first-party claim. Even though your business has paid the insurance premium, the insurance company may deny or underpay your first-party claim. This results in a denial or underpayment of insurance benefits you are entitled to under your business insurance policy. Insurance companies often try to minimize their payouts on claims and may initially deny your first-party claim or make a low initial offer to settle your commercial property claim.
As a general rule, commercial property insurance policies cover damage or loss of business property and loss of income under business interruption coverage. First-party commercial property policies may insure businesses against losses from all risks or from specifically identified losses called “named perils.” A named perils policy may be written to apply to the types of hazards present in a given type of business. Commercial property covered under a commercial policy may include real estate, buildings, equipment, machinery and inventory.
Business property policies also typically cover loss of business income resulting from interruption of business caused by property damage. The experienced Houston insurance claims attorney at Wyly & Cook, PLLC can help identify business interruption coverage and losses caused by service interruption, cancelled contracts, payroll impacts and other losses. We can also help you recover clean-up costs or demolition costs as part of a business loss claim after a natural disaster such as Hurricane Harvey, a hailstorm, windstorm or fire.
THE INSURANCE COMPANY MUST COMPLY WITH DEADLINES UNDER TEXAS LAW
Your commercial insurance company has fifteen days to acknowledge your claim and begin investigating your business property loss. The insurance company has an additional fifteen business days after it receives all items, statements, and forms reasonably required to secure final proof of loss to accept or reject your claim in writing. The insurance company must pay you within five business days after notifying you that your claim is accepted. These deadlines will be extended by fifteen days in the event of a major natural disaster like Hurricane Harvey.
If your business insurance company misses any of these deadlines on your first-party claim, the insurance company may be subject to interest penalties and attorney fees. Your insurance company may also be found in bad faith for delaying payment or underpaying your commercial first-party claim when it’s reasonably clear the company is liable.
At Wyly & Cook, PLLC, we believe businesses should receive full value on their first-party claims. Our commercial insurance attorneys routinely help small businesses whose property damage and business interruption claims have been wrongfully denied, delay or underpaid.
Contact us today at 713-236-8330 or fill out the contact form on this page to discuss your rights and options. The initial consultation is free.