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Learn Your Gap.

Copper is Number 29 on periodic table. Cu is the symbol. Its soft, malleable and ductile with very high thermal and electrical conductivity. It’s one of the oldest metals in use. It rose to prominence during the Middle Ages in Europe, Egypt, and Asia.

In ancient Egypt, copper was used to sterilize wounds and drinking water. Ancient Aztecs gargled water mixed with copper to fight sore throats, and Hippocrates reportedly treated leg ulcers with copper. Today, scientific research has proven that copper has an antimicrobial effect, which is why more hospitals around the world are finding ways to use copper equipment to stem hospital infections.

The Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine recommends that adults consume about 900 micrograms of copper daily through foods such as dark chocolate, nuts, seafood, legumes, liver and green leafy vegetables. Throughout time, healers have believed that copper is capable of transferring energy to aid the healing process in both the body and mind.

While there’s concern about using up our earth’s supply of resources, we’re in no danger of running out of copper.  Scientists estimate that the earth is home to more than 8 trillion pounds of it and that we’ve only mined about 1.1 trillion pounds of it so far. The best part: The metal we’ve already mined can be recycled and reused infinitely without compromising its integrity.

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“Learn Your Gap” Yeti mug.

Questions about coverage, an insurance claim, property damage? 

Call 772.237.0892 and maybe we can meet for coffee and discuss. 

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Take a read through the following common events in property insurance claims. Policy language has been around a long time like copper. Policy language can be “soft” to you the property owner. 

Like copper the language should be a conduit to protect you and your family during unexpected events. The right amount of insurance coverage is healthy to ensure your largest financial investment is properly protected. If you have the right policy language, the policy language, like copper, should heal the wounds to your home. Providing connectivity for you and your family to pre loss condition at your home.

If you have questions about your coverage, best to call your agent, or we can explain these common claim adjusting issues. Be proactive – vs – reactive. Recovery Insurance Adjusters advocates for property owners only during a claim event. Make sure you have good language which will enable you to be paid the proper claim value. Some policyholders buy insurance coverage on “price point” – vs – the fine details of the policy language.

Here are some common events and associated policy language that you might have in your policy. 

You might be surprised to learn these gaps might not allow you to put your property back to pre-loss condition after a sudden event.

Emergency Services Dollar Value Limit​

You go out for dinner on Friday night. You arrive home after 4 hours and your kitchen sink plumbing supply line failed and water is pouring into your home. Every room is impacted with standing water. You call a company to your home and they arrive at 5:00 am to extract this water. They require you to sign paperwork. You read the paperwork hastily to get the water out of your home!

Does your policy language have language to limit emergency services incurred expense?

Some policy language would not pay more than the greater of $3,000 or 1% of the home’s insured value, unless you, the insured submitted a written request to exceed the cap. Once a request is made, the insurance company has 48 hours to approve or reject the request. If the insurance company misses the 48-hour deadline, the claimant may exceed the cap “only up to the cost incurred” for the reasonable emergency measures necessary to protect covered property from further damage.” Is it possible to communicate within 48 hours over a weekend?

What? Yes, you might be responsible to pay a dollar value above $3,000. We have seen policyholders become responsible for dollar values over $20,000 dollars out of their own pocket.

How I have it?

Water Damage Limit $10,000

You take a family weekend away. You arrive home and discover the washing machine hose failed and discharged water throughout your home. You have approximately $100,000 dollars in building damages (wood floor throughout the home, baseboards, drywall, kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanity, etc.)

Does your policy language have language to limit water damage? An example of a Florida policy “This policy provides up to $10,000 of coverage due to Water Damage caused by accidental discharge of water from plumbing or appliance. All other Water Damage is excluded except Water Damage caused by water penetration into the house when the water penetration is a direct result of damage caused by wind or hail.”

How I have it?

Cosmetic Damage Limit

Hail damage to a metal roof or even tile floor system that was damaged by an impact … some polices have implemented a limit of $10,000.00 for cosmetic issues to your home. The insurance carrier has determined these two examples to be cosmetic and limited payments to policyholder at the maximum $10,000. Even thought the value of these items could reach into the $30,000 to $100,000 or higher.

In an attempt to limit coverage for non-functional damage, insurers have begun to include the “cosmetic damage” exclusion. Cosmetic damage is usually defined as marring, pitting or other superficial damage from hail that alters the appearance of the roof, but does not prohibit it from functioning as a moisture barrier.

What does your policy have?

Flood

If you have a single family home you more than likely have a HO3 policy. Condominium is an HO6. These policies do not cover rising waters. Rising waters from ocean, lakes, rivers, collection of rain in the road or land from excessive rain. Called “ground water”, simply put water from the sky that hits land and then enters your structure is Flood damage.

You need to consider purchasing a separate policy to cover ground water; coverage for this would be to purchase a flood policy. Flood is an excess of water on land that is normally dry, affecting two or more acres of land or two or more properties.

Screen Pool or Metal Structures

A tree falls and hits your pool screen enclosure or your attached metal car port.

Depending on your policy language you might have limited coverages, or these structures might be excluded. If covered, you might have a limit on the dollar value. Is the dollar value enough to cover the replacement of the structure?

What does your policy have?

Leak in roof or window

I observed water damaged from a heavy rain storm around my windows. The water has damaged my wood floor system, drywall and baseboards. I’m covered, right? I notice water stains on my drywall ceilings in my home after a heavy rain storm. I’m covered, right?

Many policies exclude or limit coverage for interior water damage unless there is evidence of a wind-created opening in the roof, outside wall, door or window where rain entered the home or business. Often carriers deny coverage in a manner similar to the below scenario:

On such and such a date, a loss was reported to Insurance Company for water damage from roof leak causing damage to your home. The insured property was inspected by Mr. Adjuster who documented the claimed loss and determined there was no damage to the roof (or window) due to a weather condition. Because there was no storm damage to the roof then there would be no coverage for the interior damage.

The carrier then cites to the applicable water damage or wind-driven rain exclusion amongst other common policy exclusions to deny coverage. Policyholders should be aware of the following or similar policy language:

‘We do not insure for loss caused by rain, snow, sleet, sand or dust to the interior of a building unless a covered peril first damages the building causing an opening in a roof or outside wall, door or window and the rain, snow, sleet, sand or dust enters through this opening.’

What does your policy have?

Proof of Loss / 60 day file

After you have a loss, you file an insurance claim, the insurance company will often mandate that the policyholder complete and sign a form called a Proof of Loss regarding the damages claimed by the policyholder. A Proof of Loss is generally one page form (possibly with attachments) that is usually provided to the policyholder by the insurance company.

The Proof of Loss form requests specific information from the policyholder regarding the date and time the loss occurred, type of loss claimed, the available insurance policy limits, and the exact amount of damages sought by the policyholder. The Proof of Loss form may also mandate that the policyholder attach any damage estimates or other calculations that support the policyholder’s claims.

There are some insurance carriers that now have this or similar language: “Submit to us, within 60 days after the loss, your signed, sworn proof of loss which sets forth, to the best of your knowledge and belief.”

The above newer policy language is troubling:

First, many insureds will simply be unaware of this new requirement or will not understand if/how it applies to them. Instead of requesting a proof of loss (which would confirm that insureds are aware of the requirement), this insurance carrier has snuck in this requirement knowing that many insureds may overlook and/or be confused by this requirement.

Second, if an insured does not comply with this “hidden” requirement, the insurance carrier will likely use this “failure to comply” with the policy’s “Duties After Loss” as a basis for claim denial.

Third, the new language is also problematic because it requests a proof of loss within 60 days after the loss occurs. But what about instances where insureds do not immediately discover damages? For example, what happens when a July windstorm causes damage to the roof of an insured property but the insureds are unaware of the damage until leaking occurs months later? Will Olympus take the position that the claim is barred because a proof of loss was not provided within 60 days of the July windstorm?

What does your policy have?

Personal Property - RCV or ACV coverage?

There are two primary valuation methods for establishing the value of insured property for purposes of determining the amount the insurer will pay in the event of loss under a homeowner’s policy:

1. Replacement Cost Value (RCV): This method is usually defined in the policy as the cost to replace the damaged property with materials of like kind and quality, without any deduction for depreciation. It pays an insured for the value of replacing the damaged property without deduction for deterioration, obsolescence, or similar depreciation of the property’s value. The carrier assumes the cost of paying the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged property.

2. Actual Cash Value (ACV): This method pays an insured for a similar item less depreciation. ACV is ordinarily determined in one of three ways: (1) the cost to repair or replace the damaged property, minus depreciation; (2) the damaged property’s “fair market value” (“FMV”); or (3) using the “broad evidence rule,” which calls for considering all relevant evidence of the value of the damaged property. The insured bears the difference between the depreciated value of the damaged property prior to loss and the higher cost of repairing or replacing it.

What does your policy have?

14 day limit (discovered) / Hidden water leaks inside walls – Not covered

How many times do we open up our interior walls in our homes to check for leaky pipes?

Many homeowner policies have an exclusion which generally states we do not insure for a loss caused by constant or repeated seepage or leakage of water over a period of 14 or more days. Other policies state that a loss won’t be covered if the seepage or leakage occurs over weeks, months or years.

What does your policy have……………………..

Arbitration Language in Policy

Insurance Carriers could offer you a policy with ‘mandatory” arbitration language in exchange for a reduction in your annual premium cost. Be cautious as arbitration language is legal, binding and used to resolve the claim value. Arbitration removes your current ability to challenge claim values.

This is a tradeoff that you, as the policyholder, should understand and ask yourself if you are willing to accept the risk of having carrier written policy language reduce your options to secure the proper claim payment value.

Currently 11 states ban arbitration of property claim disputes. Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation as of 2022 has allowed insurance carriers to include this method of resolving claim value disputes and can be included in your policy language.

The growing use of binding, pre-dispute arbitration clauses poses a huge threat to insurance consumers. It represents a major shift in the balance of power between insurers and consumers.

Check out Public Citizens, a non profit consumer advocate since 1971. Their article on arbitration clauses in insurance policy has good information.

What does your policy have……………………..

Roof Deductibles

Insurance Carriers could offer you a policy with additional “roof” deductible language in exchange for a reduction in your annual premium cost. Be cautious as this could hinder you financially to conduct repairs.

The new law passed by the State of Florida in 2022 to provide relief to the insurance carriers has many twists to the language that could impact you, the property owner. Ask to read the proposed policy language prior to securing the coverage and be careful to understand the coverage being offered for the reduction in your premium. Keep yourself from the surprise if you have to use the insurance policy for an unscheduled event to your property.

SB 2-D creates Florida Statute § 627.701(2)(c), permitting a carrier, with the approval of the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, to offer special deductibles applying only to roof losses. SB 2-D creates Florida Statute § 627.701(4)(e)1 and 2 requiring mandatory language and disclosures on the declarations page for policies that contain deductibles applying only to roof losses.

SB 2-D creates Florida Statute § 627.701(10) addressing the mechanics of a roof deductible applying to losses other than losses from a hurricane. A separate roof deductible is permitted if the insured is given a premium credit or discount for the policy. If the separate roof deductible is offered by the carrier at the time of the initial issuance or renewal of the policy, the insured must sign a form approved by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation in order to opt-out of the separate roof deductible.

If the separate roof deductible applies, no other deductible can apply. The separate roof deductible may not exceed the lesser of 2% of Coverage A limit or 50% of the cost to replace the roof. The roof deductible can only apply to a Replacement Cost claim and it cannot not apply to

  1. A total loss by a covered peril;
  2. A hurricane loss;
  3. A loss from tree fall or other hazard that damages the roof and punctures the roof deck; or
  4. A roof loss requiring repair that is less than 50% of the roof.

SB 2-D amends Florida Statute § 627.7011(3)(a), providing that, if a separate roof deductible applies, the insurer may limit the claim payment to Actual Cash Value of the roof until the carrier receives reasonable proof of payment of the deductible. Reasonable proof of payment includes a cancelled check, money order receipt, credit card statement, or copy of an installment plan contract or other financing arrangement requiring full payment of the separate roof deductible.

Underwriting

SB 2-D creates Florida Statute § 627.7011(5) applying only to policies issued or renewed on or after July 1, 2022. Florida Statute § 627.7011(5) prohibits carriers from refusing to insure a home with a roof that is less than 15 years old solely because of the age of the roof. If the roof is at least 15 years old, and the carrier requires the replacement of the roof to issue or renew the policy, the homeowner can have a roof inspection paid for by the homeowner. The insurer is prohibited from refusing to issue a policy solely because of the age of the roof if the inspector determines that the roof has 5 or more years of useful life left.

25% Rule under Florida Building Code for Roof Repairs

SB 4-D creates Florida Statute § 553.844(5) to provide that, if the existing roofing system or roof section was built, repaired, or replaced in compliance with the 2007 Florida Building Code or any subsequent editions of the Florida Building Code, then only the repaired, replaced, or recovered portion is required to be constructed in compliance with the current Florida Building Code.

 

What does your policy have

Some policyholders buy insurance coverage on “price point” vs. the fine details of the policy language.

Are you a “price point” or detail person?

Thanks for doing a health check on your policy.

“Learn YOUR Gaps”
I would highly recommend Joe and RIA, who represented my Irma related insurance case very effectively. There is no way I could have represented myself and achieved anywhere close to the result that Joe and RIA were able to. Joe understands the details of insurance contracts, the state laws and the ins and outs of the whole adjustment process extremely well. I found communication to be clear and very straightforward, particularly when we reached points where I had a decision to make about which way to proceed. At the same time, I felt Joe was very honest and professional with the insurance carrier, adjusters and other representatives so that we could reach both a good and a fair outcome for both parties.
Michael Jacobs
Michael Jacobs
19:31 06 Jan 20
I was referred to Irene Villa as we were having some problems with an Insurance Claim. Irene was incredibly helpful and knowledgeable about the current state of the insurance industry in general. She gave me several ideas without taking our case. I was amazed how helpful she was without any company or personal gain. Thank you.
Julie Louden
Julie Louden
21:20 12 Nov 19
Joe did an assessment of our storm damage and represented us threw this process. Always informed us throughout his negotiation from assessmentof damages to the use of appraisal and umpire. Joe did a superb job and never backed down. Thank You Joe,Bob & Fran Federico
Bob & Fran Federico
Bob & Fran Federico
23:01 21 Feb 20
Recovery Insurance Adjusters did an outstanding job handling our claim. We had never used a public adjuster before, but we now know the value of their services. Joe, Cathleen, and Irene were a pleasure to work with and our successful outcome is the result of their expertise, determination and professional representation. We highly recommend RIA - they are truly the best!
pamela heeb
pamela heeb
00:02 10 Sep 19
RIA has an incredibly detail oriented and professional staff. Joe and Irene handled our slab leak claim from the start to the very end, and were able to negotiate an amount above our expectations. Irene was always accessible and returned calls in hours, not days. Do not attempt to handle a claim on your own, use these experts to advocate for your best interests.
Patrick Dayan
Patrick Dayan
17:41 06 Aug 19
In the end the insurance company paid the full loss and Recovery was consistent in emphasizing patience. Claim was from Hurricane Irma - so patience was key. Lesson learned that if you want to fight with the insurance company better to have someone like Recovery leading your change.
Mike Moran
Mike Moran
12:27 15 Mar 20
We asked Joe Connelly of Recovery Insurance Adjusters to help us out after Irma. We knew we had damage as a tree hit our home. Joe Connelly handled EVERYTHING. He inspected the damage done to our home himself spending hours doing so. He met with the insurance adjusters at our home pointing out damage that Irma had caused that the Insurance Company's adjuster never thought of addressing. Joe made all the phone calls to the insurance company. He was our representative to the insurance company and essentially lifted the chore of dealing with the insurance company off our shoulders. The bottom line is Joe was able to negotiate a fair settlement that was more than twice what the insurance company offered initially and well worth his small fee.I would strongly recommend Joe Connelly and Recovery Insurance Adjusters.
Pete Lashenka
Pete Lashenka
12:29 16 Mar 18
THE EXPERIENCE WAS WHAT YOU WOULD EXPECT. JOE AND CATHLEEN WERE EXCEPTIONAL AND WONDERFUL TO WORK WITH. THEY WORKED OVER A YEAR AND A HALF AND THIER KNOWLEDGEABLE WAS INCREDIBLE . MY CLAIM WAS DENIED AND I HAD NO IDEA HOW TO TAKE ON THE INSURANCE COMPANY. THE AWARD WAS 3 X WHAT THE INSURANCE COMPANY COULD HAVE PAID IF THEY SETTLED WITH ME IN THE BEGINNING . CATHLEEN LIKES RED WINE
James Zandlo
James Zandlo
13:46 08 May 20
After returning from our vacation and finding that our master bedroom, master bathroom and pool side bathroom had been flooded because of a failed pipe valve, We called Recovery Insurance Adjusters. They took it from there and contacted our insurance company and negotiated with them on our behalf. The process was smooth and the recovery was smooth and the claim paid without any help from us. Thank you Joe Connelly and Recovery Insurance adjusters!
Philip Picco
Philip Picco
14:34 12 May 20
On NYE I found a leak in my kitchen that had been ongoing, I did some research and called RIA the next day. Irene came out 1/2 and did an assessment and took care of literally EVERYTHING. She called in a mold remediation company and dealt with our insurance company for our claim. We gave her receipts and kept in contact and she did as well. The entire process was made so easy because of RIA. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!
Katelyn Williams
Katelyn Williams
21:13 23 Apr 20
Joe Connelly from Recovery Insurance Adjusters and his assistant Cathleen Owen were extremely helpful and successful in obtaining monies from our insurance company to replace our roof after receiving damage from Hurricane Irma. It was a long process but that was because our Insurance Company was uncooperative. I would recommend this company and have already done so.
Kathy Erickson
Kathy Erickson
18:40 19 May 20
I highly recommend Joe Connelly and his team. Without their help, we never would have gotten our new roof. Our Insurance Company acknowledged the storm damage and then tried to say the damage was less than our deductible. We called Joe, and with his expertise and help, we were able to get a complete new roof, including skylights and gutters. I always recommend RIA to everyone I know.
michelle golinski
michelle golinski
22:15 29 May 20
Priscilla was our PA and she made every step.of the process simple and seamless. We only ever had to sign papers and return them to her, and we never once had to fight with or make.phone calls to our insurance. I don't know what we would have done without Priscilla handling our claim and being our advocate.10/10 would recommend working with Priscilla if you have an insurance claim that you need help handling!
Kimberle Williams
Kimberle Williams
15:43 08 Jun 22
I was referred to RIA and Joe to get an accurate number for repairs to submit to my insurance company that had shorted us an unreasonable amount for hurricane damages. He was extremely professional and down to the detail in his documentation. It provided us really good footing when we eventually went to litigation with the insurance company.He helped represent us in our first meeting with the insurance company before we had to hire a lawyer to go further due to the insurance company's no-show and refusal to award money. Joe always made sure we were in the know of what was going on and what was going to happen.I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Cathleen. Cathleen always called to check up on us during this 2 year process and to update us on what was going on. Always friendly and always caring.Our whole experience with RIA was amazing, especially when you are feeling distraught about damages to your home. I would gladly use their services again should I incur storm damages I need to refute in the future.
Jason Mazzota
Jason Mazzota
16:14 08 Jun 22
We are very grateful and most thankful for the experience and outcome Recovery Insurance Adjusters provided our family with our roof claim. Irene Villa of RIA walked us through every step of this process. She was both honest and direct; being a true advocate for the homeowner. I would highly recommend Recovery Insurance Adjusters. They truly work hard for their clients and make it their goal to provide them the proper outcome and resolution.
Katie Norris
Katie Norris
20:22 16 Mar 22
I highly recommend Joe Connelly and his team. They were very thorough and a pleasure to work with. We would have been stiffed by our insurance company without Joe's support. Thanks Joe!!
Jason Hoffman
Jason Hoffman
16:38 20 Apr 22
RIA is certainly the expert in helping you recover from insured damages. We made the right move, getting their input up front and engaging them on damages to my elderly parents home. They provided excellent input, stayed engaged and provided crucial advice right up to the end. Thank you Joe, Irene and the RIA team!
Patrick LaConte
Patrick LaConte
20:20 26 Apr 22
Irene was wonderful to work with! She knew exactly what needed to be done and did everything in a timely manner.
Debi Conley
Debi Conley
02:47 23 Feb 22
Great company and staff. Special thanks to pricila our private adjuster she was great from the start to the end she fought to the end I totally recommend to anyone. Blessings
Robbin Ramos
Robbin Ramos
14:03 20 Jun 22
Priscilla Vega from Recovery Insurance Adjusters did a phenomenal job handling my claim. She was very knowledgeable and always available to answer any and all questions. I highly recommend.
Jesus Gracia
Jesus Gracia
22:32 26 Jun 22
Priscilla and her team are knowledgeable, thorough and persistent. I give them 5 stars.
kenneth rickson
kenneth rickson
15:34 22 Jun 22
Hands down the smoothest and stress free part of this disaster. Irene was so friendly always available responding to messages nights weekends anytime. Highly recommend if you are struggling with an insurance claim reach out and ask for Irene.
andrew opila
andrew opila
13:42 26 Jul 22
After getting nowhere with our insurance company we hired RIA to assist us and the representative was very helpful with making us understand what the insurance company was doing. Priscilla Vega worked very hard to negotiate and to come to a mutual understanding with the insurance company who were dragging their feet. I highly recommend this company.
Wayne Donaldson
Wayne Donaldson
14:58 29 Aug 22
After getting nowhere with our insurance company we hired RIA to assist us and the representative was very helpful with making us understand what the insurance company was doing. Priscilla Vega worked very hard to negotiate and to come to a mutual understanding with the insurance company who were dragging their feet. I highly recommend this company.
Wayne Donaldson
Wayne Donaldson
19:10 29 Aug 22
We had the pleasure of working with Irene from Recovery Insurance Adjusters and she was fantastic! She was so knowledgeable and guided us each step of the way. She went above and beyond and answered all of our questions and gave great advice. I will definitely be referring RIA to anyone that needs it!
Kristy Thomason
Kristy Thomason
14:24 24 Sep 22

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Recovery Insurance Adjusters

East Coast Florida:
4365 SW Thicket Court
Palm City, FL 34990
772-237-0892

West Coast Florida:
868 Banyan Court
Marco Island, FL 34145
239-877-1305

Joseph P. Connelly, Lic. #E157037

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