What is a Public Adjuster?

Public Adjuster meeting with people

What is the difference between a public adjuster and an insurance adjuster?

Indeed, just what is a public adjuster?  According to Wikipedia, a public adjuster is a professional claims handler that is an advocate for a policyholder when it comes to negotiating an insurance claim. In simple terms, you hire a public adjuster to defend your side of a claim when the insurance company’s adjuster recommend your claim be denied, or not paid in the amount you see should have been paid. 

When you have had significant damage to your business, home, or vehicle, you want your insurance claim to be filed and settled quickly so that business and life can go on as intended. As a policyholder, your first step is to identify who to hire as a representative for you, which you may think that would be an independent adjuster, which would be incorrect. 

An independent adjuster works for the insurance company, not for the client. They are hired to protect the insurance company’s bottom line and to legally represent the insurance carrier and their rights.

What is the role of a public adjuster?

As the policy holder, you want a public adjuster that has exclusively worked with insurance policyholders to process involved and typical insurance property claims. A public adjuster can assist with documentation, expediting and filing claims. They assist the policy hold with an entire claims process, legally representing the policyholder to the insurance company. They ensure a policyholder’s claim is handled fast, fair, and get the maximum financial compensation.

What does a public adjuster do?

A public adjuster works for the insurance client, representing the client to negotiate the best results possible. They will study the claim and what the cause of filing the claim was for, the client’s history with the insurance company and any insurance company before. 

Why you should hire a public adjuster?

Your first thought as an insurance client will probably be, “My insurance agent will take care of me and see that I am treated fairly with my insurance claim.”. You would be wrong in that thought though. If you think about it, your insurance agent is a salesperson for the insurance company and the insurance company is their employer. They are going to do what they can for their clients – to a certain level.  

So, is a public adjuster good to have on your side? Absolutely!  They will be the mediator between the insurance agent that sold your policy and you, the client with the insurance policy. They will make sure the insurance policy is followed to the final word that takes your best interest, not the best interest of the agent or their employer, the insurance company.

When should you hire a public adjuster?

When you have an unexpected property damage or property loss, your insurance company is going to have a team of experts on their side. A team of experts against you, the policy holder. As a policyholder, you have your obligations, making your premium payments, and you have your rights. One of your rights is having the ability to hire the services of a public adjuster that will be your advocate. 

So, do you need a public adjuster every time you have an insurance claim? Let’s hope not!  When do you need a public adjuster? Here are four times that you should consider hiring one: 

1. Documentation, Filing and Proving the Claim

There can be many complicating factors when filing an insurance claim and a public adjuster is the person that knows what you need to satisfy the insurance company requirements. 

Insurance claim scan quickly become challenging to navigate. Proving the value of what you lost and being reimbursed an amount equivalent to that amount.  A public adjuster will have the experience and knowledge how to handle your claim and ensure you receive an adequate and proper settlement.

2. Understanding the Insurance Policy Language and The Coverage

A public adjuster is going to work for you, not the insurance company. Their goal is to make sure you are financially covered for your loss, so they will work though the complex provisions and processes. They understand the clauses and legal terms that need to be addressed and answered so that you get the maximum settlement possible. 

3. Time Is Money 

When you have suffered a loss for your business or home, you’re stressed with all the responsibilities entailed with both, so time is money, especially if you own a business. Your time is needed in getting things back to normal, not dealing with paperwork. A public adjuster will take a lot of that off of you, allowing to take care of the family or the business, or both. 

Unfortunately, as the insured, the burden of proof is on you to prove you have coming what you feel you is right. A public adjuster will evaluate your insurance policy and determine the best strategy to present your claim. They will make sure everything is documented and detailed, negotiate with the insurance carrier for you, and keep you advised and informed. 

4. Insurance Company Taking Too Long

As a policy holder and claimant, you may feel that the insurance company isn’t answering and responding in a timely manner. Maybe you aren’t comfortable that they have evaluated your claim adequately and thoroughly. When the lengthy process of an insurance claim is longer than you think it should be, a public adjuster will step in and get the attention your claim deserves and that all related expenses are reimbursed as the policy dictates. 

agreement met

Is it a good idea to hire a public adjuster?

With the reasons listed above, it would be hard to say no to that question, but we’ll review the  pros and cons of a public adjuster: 

Advantages 

  1. Vast Range of Knowledge of Strict Insurance Standards: The only person that will have a knowledge and understanding of the strict standards insurance companies dictate is the policy writers. Public adjusters complete a rigorous training to be licensed and bonded to do what they do.  
  2. Your Advocate: Filing property damage claim is no picnic, even if you know you have coverage. The headache, the stress, it can be overwhelming when you’re involved. A public adjuster is an outsider looking through your window to see what the insurance company is missing. Any issues with why you’re filing a claim for certain items, the insurance adjuster is the objective third party and will negotiate on your behalf.  
  3. Higher Settlement: A public adjuster can often get a policyholders over 700% more in what their insurance settlement offer. 

 Disadvantages

  1. Only Major Claims: Most public adjusters will only handle a major claim that has expensive items and property involved with catastrophic property damage. Typically, if the claim is less than $10,000, you can’t find a public adjuster to take your case. 
  2. A Percentage of the Settlement: Public adjusters have to make a living like anyone. Most public adjusters are paid on a percentage of the claim settlement, which is why they work as hard as they do. The bigger the settlement, the more money they make. 
  3. The Process Is Timely: Most insurance claims that public adjusters handle are pretty quick to complete, but sometimes, they can run into issues that require some work to get around. They want to get you the most money possible without having to take the insurance company to court. 

On Public Adjusters

Are you not sure how to get a public adjuster? Ask other people that have used a public adjuster for referrals is the best method. You can also do a Google search for public adjuster services. You’ll get several to call and question their policies and if they believe you have a case. If you have an attorney, they recommend one to you as well. Call 833-312-5246 today for your public adjuster in Indianapolis, IN.