Now that you’ve made the smart decision to hire a public adjuster, the next step is to choose the one that will best fit with your needs. Public adjusters don’t all work in the same way, just as real estate agents don’t all work in the same way. You’ll find a great diversity of work styles and personality types in the various adjusters. Since you’re the one doing the hiring, you have complete control over whom you hire; your insurance company doesn’t have a say. So how do you choose a public adjuster?
Ask About Experience
Public adjusters will have varying levels of experience. While you should certainly choose a public adjuster with a sufficient number of years of experience, there are also factors related to the experience that you should look for. Preferably, look for an adjuster with experience working with your specific type of loss; especially if it’s a business loss. Businesses typically have specialty equipment and part of the adjuster’s job is to correctly value equipment losses. This will just make it easier if the adjuster is accustomed to representing business owners. It’s also helpful if the adjuster has experience working with your particular insurance company. Various companies have different claims processes so this experience could make things a little smoother, too.
It’s okay to ask for personal referrals from any adjuster you’re seriously considering hiring. They should have two or three past clients whom you can contact for performance evaluation. Also, check online to see if the company has reviews you can read. Remember to read each review with a grain of salt. Not every review will be positive. Look for a positive trend, not a perfect record.
Find Out Whom You’ll Be Dealing With
If you hire a company rather than an independent public adjuster, you may be working with several different adjusters at different stages of the claims process. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, since some adjusters specialize in one or more aspects, such as taking and valuing inventory or negotiating. But you should still know ahead of time whom you’ll be dealing with so that you can ensure a good working relationship with the adjuster or with the public adjuster company’s team.
Confirm Correct Licensing
Professional public adjusters are licensed by the state in which they practice. If you encounter some other kind of “professional” who claims that they can act as your adjuster, steer clear. Only a licensed adjuster is authorized to work with and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. Confirm the public adjuster’s licensing credentials before signing any kind of service contract with them.
Find Your Public Adjuster Yourself
After widespread catastrophic damage, such as after a hurricane, a lot of “pseudo” adjusters may crop up and contact homeowners offering to handle claims and repairs. Beware of this practice. To protect yourself from impersonators, find your public adjuster yourself, don’t let them choose you. That way, you can be sure you’re hiring a legitimate professional and not someone trying to take advantage of desperate homeowners in a crisis.
If you follow all these guidelines, you’ll be sure to hire a reputable public adjuster who can ethically represent your interests in an insurance claim. If you’re looking for a public adjuster now, please contact our office. We’ll be happy to provide you with all the information you need to ensure a good choice for a public adjuster.