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Myths and Facts About Hail Damage Insurance Claims

MYTH #1. I looked at my roof after the hail storm and didn’t see any problems, or my roofer inspected my roof and said there is no damage.

FACT: Roofing systems must be physically inspected by some one who has training and experience in determining if there is actual hail damage. Insurance companies send adjusters to special training so they can properly understand and identify hail damage to your property, unfortunately there isn’t much in the way of ongoing training for the roofing industry regarding properly identifying hail damage to roofing systems.

MYTH #2. I’m not missing any shingles so I must be OK and don’t have hail damage.

FACT: Missing shingles are more related to wind damage claims and can happen during a hail storm if winds are high enough. However, hail damage is insidious in nature and may not by physically visible from the ground. Additionally missing shingles are not used as an identifying criteria for actual hail damage to roofing systems.

MYTH #3. I only have one year to file my hail damage insurance claim.

FACT: Many insurance companies do have a one year limit after the date of loss for you to file your insurance claim, and some companies even have a six month time period, however, due to the nature of some hail storms the damage can be wide spread geographically. This may prompt some insurance companies to extend the filing date for a hail damage claim so it’s best to find out from your agent if the filing date has been extended or not. If not don’t delay filing your claim under any circumstance.

MYTH #4. My roof is new so it’s covered by the manufacturer’s, home builder or roofing contractors warranty.

FACT: Manufacturer’s specifically exclude hail damage from most of their product warranties, so do home builders and roofing contractors. Newer roofs can actually be more susceptible to hail damage versus older roofs. This is due to the fact that newer roofs take more time to cure from exposure to the elements.

MYTH #5. I was told my roof has minimal or very little damage and therefor I don’t need to bother filing an insurance claim.

FACT: If your roof has any damage what-so-ever you have a valid insurance claim and should file with your insurance company. Damage might not cause your roof to leak or fail for years. This is why it’s important to have a qualified person inspect your roof.

MYTH #6 My insurance said they only owe to replace the sections of my roof that are damaged.

FACT: Generally speak this may or may not be true. There may be certain circumstances that would require a complete replacement of your roofing. So roofing systems may no longer be covered under a manufacturers warranty if the whole roof isn’t replaced.

MYTH #7 My insurance company adjuster denied hail damage roof claim, I’m out of luck and can’t get a new roof.

FACT: Even though an insurance company may have denied your claim you can in most cases request another inspection but may need to provide your insurance company an estimate for repairs before they’ll reinspect your roof. Check with your state and policy to be sure what you can and can’t do.

MYTH #8. My insurance company will cancel my policy if I file a hail damage claim.

FACT: Most states prohibit insurance companies from cancelling policies for filing claims arising from severe weather related events. Check with your state and your policy language as well.

MYTH #9. If I don’t file my claim my insurance company won’t raise my rates.

FACT: After a disaster insurance companies may indeed raise rates. They cannot however individually raise your rate for filing a storm related claim like they would if you drove your car through your garage. So if you don’t file your claim your rate increase is helping to pay for every claim that was filed except yours.

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