Fierce storm in St. Louis area sends claim teams into action
An American Family Insurance catastrophe team will partner with local adjusters to help customers after strong thunderstorms with damaging hail and strong winds struck the St. Louis area Wednesday downing trees and damaging cars and homes.
Madison, Wis. (May 12, 2016) – A severe storm whipped through the St. Louis area with fierce winds and three-inch hail that damaged property and vehicles.
Local claim adjusters from American Family Insurance are partnering with a catastrophe team to help customers assess damage and recover from the weather event. The most damage is centered in Jefferson, St. Charles and St. Louis counties.
American Family Insurance customers who have claims from storm damage should immediately contact the company's 24-hour Customer Care Center, 1-800-MY-AMFAM (692-6326). They can also report claims to their local American Family agent, or online at www.amfam.com/claims.
It’s important for customers to call in a claim as soon as possible so one of American Family’s claim adjusters can make contact to inspect their property. Customers with damage to their vehicles need to call to make an appointment before taking it to a drive-in site for inspection. A care center operator will have the most up-to-date information on drive-in locations.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:
Can I start to make repairs to prevent further damage?
You should protect your property immediately against further damage and theft. Use plywood, tarps or other materials to cover broken windows and damaged rooftops. Keep the receipts of any materials/services that you purchase to make these repairs so your adjuster can review them and reimburse you for expenses covered by your policy.
Do I have coverage to replace damaged trees or remove tree debris caused by the storm?
Homeowners insurance generally does not cover damage to trees or the removal of tree debris from the property. If a tree has fallen on your home and caused damage, however, we pay to cut away that part of the tree so repairs can be made; most policies pay up to $500 for removing that part of the tree from the property. Check your policy for specific coverage.
The storm caused a neighbor's tree to fall on my house? Whose insurance company should I report my claim to - the neighbor's or mine?
Report the claim to American Family Insurance. Since the cause of damage was an act of nature, your insurance policy applies. If the roles were reversed and a tree from your property fell on your neighbor's home, the neighbor's insurance policy would apply.
How will the inspection process work?
- When a hailstorm creates a large volume of claims, we will typically establish one or more drive-in sites where policyholders can take their hail-damaged vehicles to be inspected and receive payment for repairs, less their deductible. These inspections take place on an appointment basis only, so it's important that you first report your claim.
- If your home has sustained hail damage, an adjuster will contact you at one of the phone numbers you provided when you reported your claim. The two of you will schedule an inspection of your home, after which the adjuster will develop an estimate and issue payment for repairs covered by your policy.
Who do I call to make repairs?
You are free to select any contractor (home) or repair shop (auto) you wish. It is usually best to select one who has operated in the area for several years, is insured and bonded and gives you a written guarantee for the work performed.
About American Family Insurance
Madison, Wis. - based American Family Insurance is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company and ranks 358th on the Fortune 500 list. The company sells American Family-brand products, including auto, homeowners, life, business and farm/ranch insurance, through its exclusive agents in 19 states. American Family affiliates (The General, Homesite and AssureStart) also provide options for consumers who want to manage their insurance matters directly over the Internet or by phone. Web www.amfam.com; Facebook www.facebook.com/amfam; Twitter www.twitter.com/amfam; Google+ plus.google.com/+amfam/