Mildew claims often arise when the materials or structure of an individual’s property are damaged from mildew, mold, toxic mold growth as a result of water exposure from flooding, plumbing or roof leaks, high humidity, or sink, bathtub or toilet overflows. Most of the time, it takes a professional to discover the growth of mildew, so if it can be seen by the naked eye the mildew has probably already caused extensive damage.
Mildew growth can be hazardous to one’s health as it can result in respiratory problems, eye irritation, asthma, breathing or sinus problems, skin irritations, headaches, or other aches and pains.
Mildew exposure can result in a variety of problems, including medical issues, the cost of cleaning the property and the expense involved with repairing any damage caused by the mildew to the structure of the property.
If your mildew claim has been illegally denied by your insurance company, or your insurance company has acted in bad faith, it is important to hire an experienced Tampa insurance lawyer.
Tampa, FL Mildew Claims Lawyer
Mildew occurs from prolonged water exposure usually from flooding or leaks in plumbing or a home’s roof. Once mildew is visible, then the damage has already been done and you need to file a claim immediately. So, what do you do when your insurance company keeps disputing or denying your mildew claim? The best answer is to consult with an Tampa insurance lawyer like Michael Germain of Germain Law Group, P.A..
Contact the Germain Law Group at (813) 835-8888 for a consultation about your mildew claim in Tampa, Florida. Attorney Michael B. Germain is knowledgeable in all areas of Florida’s insurance laws and is experienced in all aspects of damage arising from mildew claims. Call the Germain Law Group today about your property damage claim or claim denial throughout the areas in Hillsborough County, Pinellas County, Brevard County and Manatee County, Florida.
- Is Mildew Dangerous?
- Mildew Insurance in Florida
- Filing a Mildew Claim in FL
- Denial of Mildew Claims
- Additional Resources
Is Mildew Dangerous?
Many confuse mildew and mold, but in reality, mildew is a specific type of mold. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) states mildew is a type of early-stage mold. It’s a microscopic fungus that travels through the air in the form of tiny spores. Mildew grows once these spores land in a humid or damp area.
There are a few differences between mildew and mold. Mildew doesn’t penetrate surfaces and instead grows on top of any flat surface spores land on. It usually is found in tight moist spaces like the grout on your bathroom tiles. Mildew is not as dangerous to your health than toxic mold, but it can still lead to serious health issues. With prolonged exposure, mildew can cause mild to severe cold or flu symptoms in humans. Especially if you already have a pre-existing condition such as asthma.
Mildew Insurance in Florida
Some insurance companies may cover mildew claims depending on what the cause was. For example, if your provider covers the cause of the mildew in your specific policy, such as leaking pipes, they will probably cover any damage that resulted from the pipe leaks, including mildew damage.
Florida homeowner’s property insurance policies typically do not cover damage from water exposure or flooding, unless the policyholder has chosen to pay higher premiums for the extra coverage. Therefore, if your mildew claim arose from water damage or flooding, your insurance provider will probably deny your mildew claim. It is important to determine what types of damage are covered by your policy and see if there are any specific mildew exclusions in your policy.
Many insurance companies will attempt to dispute the mildew cause in bad faith and try to prove it resulted from something that is excluded in your insurance policy. It is important to hire a knowledgeable insurance attorney who will help you prepare for any denials or delays by your insurance provider.
Filing a Mildew Claim in Florida
When you make the decision to file a claim for property damage under your homeowner’s insurance policy, it is important to immediately call your insurance attorney to ensure you provide the most accurate information to your provider.
After you have discussed the facts of your particular case with your attorney, you should then contact your insurance carrier. It is important to act without delay, as there are statutes of limitations (SOL) in place under Florida law for filing property damage claims. A statute of limitations is the maximum amount of time the claim can be filed before it becomes null and void. Florida’s SOL for many property damage claims is four years under Fla. Stat. § 95.11.
From the time you first discover the mildew damage and throughout the entire claims process, it is important to keep photos and videos of the damage. Additionally, documentation of any conversations made with your insurance company and any receipts from repairing the damage should be kept throughout the entire process. Your insurance provider will probably attempt to dispute the extent of damage and cost of repairs. Any evidence you keep will help you recover the benefits you are entitled to.
Your insurance policy will probably require you to prevent any additional damage to your property after the initial damage has occurred. If further damage does occur to your property and you could have prevented it, your insurer may deny your entire claim.
A recently enacted Florida law permits insurance companies to withhold payments for any home damage for certain claims until the repairs have been made by the policyholder. This means the insured is required to pay for the damage before their insurance company will reimburse them for any costs.
Denial of Mildew Claims in Tampa
There are several reasons an insurance provider will attempt to deny property damage claim resulting from mildew. These reasons can usually include the cause of the mildew was excluded from the policy, necessary facts or information were not timely disclosed to the insurance company, the claim was fraudulent, or the premiums on the insurance policy were not timely paid.
Once your insurance company has denied your mildew claim, they must provide you with notice of the denial that explains the denied coverage and the specific reasons for the denial. Your insurance carrier may also be acting in bad faith if they are delaying payment of your claim or processing the claim.
It is important to hire a Tampa insurance attorney if your mildew claim was denied or delayed in bad faith by your insurance provider. Your insurance lawyer will help you proceed with any necessary legal action on your behalf.
Dealing with Mold & Mildew | FEMA – Visit the official website for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to read their brochure on mold and mildew. Access the brochure to learn how mildew can damage your home, causes of mildew, how to identify the source of moisture, and preventative tips.
Protect Your Home from Mold | III – Visit the official website for the Insurance Information Institute (III) to read their article about mold and how to protect your property from it. Access the site how to take precautions after a flood or storm, tips on how to avoid mold, and the damage mold causes policyholders in the United States every year.
Mildew Damage Attorney in Tampa | Germain Law Group, P.A.
Contact the Germain Law Group today for a consultation about your mildew damage claim in Hillsborough County, Pinellas County, Brevard County and Manatee County. Michael B. Germain is an experienced Tampa insurance claim dispute attorney who will listen to the facts of your situation and help you determine the best recourse in pursuing your mildew damage claim. Contact the Germain Law Group at (813) 835-8888 for a consultation about your property insurance claim throughout Central Florida, including Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Titusville, Palm Bay, Melbourne, Bradenton, and Palmetto.