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How to Handle a Lightning Damage Insurance Claim

It’s summer in South Florida. Do you know what to do when lightning strikes? Lightning damage insurance claims are common during this time of the year.

Summer brings the beginning of Hurricane Season, and the inevitable thunderstorms and lightning that seem to rock South Florida in the afternoon. A story in today’s Sun-Sentinel about an apartment building in Deerfield Beach that was struck by lightning yesterday highlights the problems which can arise with powerful summertime storms. The Cove Village Apartment complex was struck by lightning at approximately 7:40 p.m. The impact of the lightning strike was strong enough to knock a hole in the building’s wall. Fortunately, it does not appear that anyone was injured. The Cove Village complex is located just east of Federal Highway on Southeast 10th Street.

The rainstorms and lightning we encounter during the summer can cause a variety of damage to your house or office. Keep in mind that most of this damage will be covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy, although proving what caused the damage, and getting your insurance company to pay you for your property damage, can often times be difficult.

Rain and water damage are usually pretty obvious. You can expect your insurance company to throw up the usual red flags in trying to deny coverage for your damages – long term leakage, failure to maintain, late notice of the claim. In water damage claims, photographs can be your strongest ally. Take photos and videotape of the water that is entering your house or building so that you will have proof of the date and time you experienced the water damage, and the areas of your house or building where it occurred.

Proving Your Lightning Damage Insurance Claim

Lightning damage can be more difficult to prove. A hole in the building is pretty good evidence that something significant happened to your house, and there are probably burn marks at the Cove Village apartment complex that indicate the cause of the hole. However, there are many other damages that occur with lightning strikes that are not as easy to link to the lightning strike.

Appliances shorting out is one of the most common problems with lightning strikes. But appliances can suffer electrical problems for a host of reasons, including power surges, or just being an old appliances. If you suspect lightning has damaged your home or office, you need to retain an experienced electrician (and a property damage lawyer) to document the cause of the damage. The electrician should look at the damages as soon as possible after the lightning to document any damage that has occurred. And, the property damage lawyer can assist you in documenting your claim, gathering evidence to confirm the lightning strike, and most importantly, help you recover money for your damages from the insurance company.


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