Home Automobiles Car Damaged by Hurricane Irma, Am I Covered?

Car Damaged by Hurricane Irma, Am I Covered?

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Your front yard tree that provided shade to your family for years has now shattered your car, what do you do?  If you have comprehensive coverage on your auto policy you are likely covered.

  • First, check your auto insurance bill or the declarations page of your policy to determine if your purchases comprehensive coverage.  If you can’t tell from the information you have, call your insurer and ask if you have comprehensive coverage.
  • Second, determine if you have a deductible.  Deductibles can range from $250.00 to $1,000.00 or more for comprehensive coverage depending on which one you purchased.
  • Third, assess the damage to your vehicle, make a list of the damages, then call your insurer to report the claim.  The insurance company should then coordinate with you for an estimate of the damage to the vehicle.  If the amount of the damages to your auto are less than your deductible then you will not receive payment from your insurer.

If however, the damages to your auto are greater than the deducible then your will be able to recover the amount greater than the deductible in order to have your auto repaired.

Car Damaged by Neighbor’s Tree During Hurricane Irma, Am I Covered?

Your neighbor’s tree was an uninvited guest to your hurricane Irma party and unfortunately landed on your car, what do you do?  First, if the tree was truly owned by your neighbor you may have coverage through the neighbor’s homeowner’s insurance policy.  Ask the neighbor for the name of their insurance company so that you can file a claim to have the damages to your car repaired.

If you carry comprehensive coverage on your auto you may choose to file a claim with your own insurer rather than ask your neighbor for their information.  If you decide to go through your own comprehensive coverage you may have a deductible that you will have to cover that could range from $250.00 to $1,000.00 or more, note you would not be responsible for a deductible if you filed the claim through your neighbor’s homeowner’s insurance policy.

If you decide to file the claim with your own insurer then advise your insurer that the tree belonged to the neighbor and you would like for them to submit the claim to your neighbor’s homeowner’s insurance in order to recoup your deductible.  Lastly, if you did not carry comprehensive coverage then your only choice is to file the claim with your neighbor’s homeowner’s insurance policy in order to get the damages fixed.


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J.D., as folks call him, was born in the hills of Harriman Tennessee and concentrates primarily in the area of insurance litigation. J.D. received his B.A. degree from Emory and Henry College and his law degree from St. Thomas University where he was a member of the Moot Court Team. J.D. is a litigator and has participated in over 5,000 P.I.P. and insurance cases (including appeals). Several of these cases have been published in the Florida Law Weekly Supplement. In addition to a busy litigation schedule, J.D. was a contributing author of Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law (P.I.P.), printed and nationally distributed by West Group. J.D. also volunteers in his spare time with Save Dade, a non-profit group dedicated to fighting discrimination against gay people and served as President of the North Dade Bar Association from 2008-2009. JD handles Personal Injury Protection (P.I.P.) insurance litigation on behalf of medical providers pursuing underpaid or denied insurance claims. In addition, J.D. practices in the area of health care law, assisting medical providers with regulatory and licensure issues as well as clinic audits and inspections. But perhaps the most unique experience that J.D. brings to this predominately plaintiff's firm is that he has served as claims counsel to an insurance company -- essentially training an entire insurance company on the claims process and P.I.P. law and guiding them to avoid mistakes that lead to costly lawsuits.