A public adjuster is an insurance claims adjuster that policyholders can hire to assist them in filing an insurance claim. As a fee, these insurance industry professionals usually accept a percentage of the policy payout. Not every insurance claim warrants the use of a public insurance adjuster, but if the claim appears to be complicated or policyholders are concerned about a dispute, bringing in a public adjuster can be beneficial.
A public insurance adjuster, unlike a company insurance adjuster, protects the policyholder’s rights. Company adjusters are in charge of ensuring that their employers pay out the least amount of money possible, with the goal of saving the insurance company money avoiding payouts on claims that do not deserve payouts and ensuring that claims are not overpaid. A public insurance adjuster has the same education and experience as a company adjuster, but he or she is more concerned with getting the best possible settlement for the policyholder rather than the insurance company.
When a public adjuster is hired, the first thing he or she does is look over the insurance policy to see what is covered and what the coverage limits are. Then he or she evaluates the situation that requires a claim, such as a house fire. The claim is meticulously documented and packaged for the insurance company the public adjuster. Because he or she understands what the insurance company’s adjusters are looking for, the claim can be tailored to address specific issues that could lead to a dispute or denial of the claim.
In an ideal world, the public adjuster’s job would be finished at this point, and the insurance company would respond with a fair settlement. A public adjuster, on the other hand, is frequently forced to negotiate with the insurance company in order to increase the payout. Public adjusters have the legal authority to represent their clients in negotiations, bargaining for the best possible outcome. If additional damage or issues are discovered after the claim is settled, the adjuster can file a new claim.
Public adjusters can also provide insurance coverage advice. After assisting clients with claims, they frequently make policy recommendations, such as increasing coverage limits, to ensure that the consumer is better protected in the future. While hiring a public adjuster is not required, it can help move a claim along more quickly, allowing people to receive a payout sooner than they would if they handled it themselves.
A trade organization of professional adjusters, which can provide a list of members in good standing in the area where a client lives, is the best resource for finding a public adjuster.