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Written by Andy Gurczak

July 3, 2024

Loss Adjuster vs. Public Adjuster: Understanding the Difference

When faced with property damage or loss, navigating the insurance claims process can feel overwhelming. This is where professionals like loss adjusters and public adjusters come into play. However, their roles are distinct, and understanding these differences is crucial for policyholders.

Who is a Loss Adjuster?

A loss adjuster, sometimes called an insurance adjuster, is typically appointed by your insurance company following a claim. Their primary responsibility is to investigate the circumstances of your loss, assess the damage, and determine the amount your insurance company is liable to pay out under your policy. Essentially, they represent the interests of the insurer.

What Does a Loss Adjuster Do?

  • Investigate the Claim: They will visit the site of the loss, gather evidence, interview witnesses, and review documentation to establish the cause and extent of the damage.
  • Evaluate Coverage: They will examine your insurance policy and look for any exclusions or perils that can delay or deny the claim.
  • Estimate the Loss: They will calculate the cost of repairing or replacing the damaged property, taking into account depreciation and other factors with the insurance guidelines and exclusions in mind to minimize the payment.
  • Negotiate the Settlement: They will work with you to reach an agreement on the amount of compensation to be paid out and try to offer the lowest possible settlement.

Who is a Public Adjuster?

A public adjuster, on the other hand, is hired by you, the policyholder. Their role is to advocate for your interests throughout the claims process, ensuring you receive the maximum settlement possible. While loss adjusters work for the insurance company, a public adjuster is solely focused on your needs.

What Does a Public Adjuster Do?

  • Assess the Damage: They will thoroughly evaluate the damage to your property, often with the help of experts like engineers or contractors.
  • Prepare the Claim: They will compile all necessary documentation, including photographs, estimates, and inventories, to support your claim.
  • Negotiate with the Insurer: They will leverage their expertise and knowledge of insurance policies to negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.
  • Represent You: They will act as your advocate throughout the claims process, communicating with the insurance company, attending meetings, and handling any disputes that may arise.

When Should You Consider Hiring a Public Adjuster?

Every claim. Right from the start. Do not wait till the claim is denied or delayed. You want to get a public adjuster involved right from the start.

Also, there are certain situations where their services can be invaluable:

  • Complex Claims: If your loss is significant or involves multiple types of damage, a public adjuster can help you navigate the complexities of the claims process.
  • Denied Claims: If your insurance company has denied your claim or offered a low settlement, a public adjuster can help you appeal the decision or negotiate a better outcome.
  • Disputes: If you are having difficulty communicating with your insurance company or disagree with their assessment of your loss, a public adjuster can help you resolve the dispute.

Making the Right Choice for Your Situation

The decision of whether to hire a public adjuster is a personal one. It’s important to weigh the potential benefits against the cost of their services.

Remember, both loss adjusters and public adjusters play important roles in the insurance claims process. The key is to understand their roles and choose the professional that is best suited to your individual needs and circumstances.

Okay, here’s the continuation, focusing on the key differences between the two roles and providing more helpful insights:

Factors to Consider When Hiring a Public Adjuster

  • Experience and Credentials: Look for a public adjuster with a proven track record and relevant certifications.
  • Fees: Understand how the public adjuster will be compensated. Some charge a percentage of the settlement, while others charge a flat fee or hourly rate.
  • Communication: Choose a public adjuster who is responsive and transparent, and who keeps you informed throughout the process.
  • Reputation: Check online reviews and ask for references to ensure the public adjuster has a good reputation.

Do You Always Need a Public Adjuster?

The answer depends on the complexity of your claim and your comfort level with handling it yourself. If your loss is relatively minor and straightforward, you may be able to manage the claims process on your own. However, if you have a complex or high-value claim, or if you are having difficulty dealing with your insurance company, a public adjuster can be a valuable asset.

Can You Switch from a Loss Adjuster to a Public Adjuster?

Yes, you can. If you are not satisfied with the service provided by the loss adjuster assigned by your insurance company, you can hire a public adjuster at any point during the claims process. The public adjuster will then take over communication with the insurance company and work to achieve a better outcome for you.

Questions to Ask a Potential Public Adjuster

Before hiring a public adjuster, be sure to ask these questions:

  • What experience do you have with claims similar to mine?
  • How will you handle my claim?
  • What are your fees and how are they structured?
  • What is your estimated timeline for resolving my claim?
  • Can you provide references from past clients?

By asking these questions, you can ensure that you are choosing a public adjuster who is qualified and capable of handling your claim effectively.

Get in Touch with AllCity Public Adjuster

If you’re feeling overwhelmed or unsure about navigating a complex or disputed insurance claim, don’t hesitate to reach out to the experts at AllCity Public Adjusting.

With a commitment to maximizing your claim value and a proven track record of securing significant increases for policyholders, we can be your advocate throughout the process. We offer a unique “no recovery, no fee” policy, meaning you only pay if they successfully increase your initial claim offer.

Our multilingual team ensures clear communication and a comprehensive understanding of your needs. Get in touch today to learn how AllCity can help you get the compensation you deserve.

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Best way to beat the insurance company is to hire AllCity Adjusting

At AllCity Adjusting we help residential and commercial clients alike get the claims support they need. Moreover, we have over 50 years of combined experience helping get our clients the max settlement time and time again. If your claim has been low balled or denied entirely we can help increase your maximum settlement. Call us today for a FREE consultation. Experience the AllCity difference.

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