Hurricane Preparation and Recovery | Claims Guidelines

Property & Casualty

Hurricane Preparation and Recovery | Claims Guidelines

At Brown & Brown we know how important hurricane preparation and recovery is to you and your business. That is why our teams are ready to assist customers who have been impacted, including customers who have facilities with supply chain disruptions. Our teams have the knowledge to support you with navigating the complicated claims process, which allows you to focus more of your time and energy on assisting employees, mitigating losses and restoring business operations. We suggest the following approach to facilitate an efficient and successful recovery.

Tropical storm forecasters anticipate 2024 to be a very active hurricane season, with the potential for over 20 named storms, exceeding historical averages (source: Tropical Storm Risk). The growing frequency and intensity of natural disasters remain a significant concern for the property insurance industry.

Emergency Response

  •  Notify Brown & Brown and your insurer of the loss as soon as possible.
  • Coordinate your loss response team and direct responsibilities to each individual on the loss response team. Typical parties involved include Risk Management, Finance, Operations, Supply Chain, Logistics, Third-Party Vendors and your Brown & Brown Claims Consultant. We suggest appointing a singular direct point of contact with the adjuster (often the Risk Manager).
  • Establish accounting procedures for capturing loss activity (typically a separate accounting string to which all loss-related expenses are tracked).
  • Contact remediation contractor(s) to complete emergency repairs (water extraction/drying equipment). Protect buildings and equipment from additional damage by making temporary repairs. Restore service to fire protection systems as quickly as possible. Document conditions with photographs. Reasonable emergency/ mitigation response is typically a policyholder’s required duty in a property policy.
  • Evaluate and separate damaged from undamaged stock. Document with photos and retain all property for the adjuster to inspect. Create an itemized inventory of the property, including type (SKU, make/ model, S/N, etc.), description, quantity, disposition (undamaged, reprocess, dispose of) and price.
  • Create a recovery plan for re-establishing operations and mitigating business interruption. Typical options include the use of undamaged inventory on hand, outsourcing to sister facilities, implementing additional shifts or overtime and rental of temporary alternate locations.
  • Review applicable leases (landlord/tenant, leased machinery/equipment, etc.) for insurance requirements and notify third parties who may have additional interest.

Recovery and Claim Preparation

  • Review policy with Brown & Brown to identify policy provisions and deductibles that may be relevant. Frequently there are special coverages, sublimits or deductibles that apply to hurricane-related losses.
    • Consider retaining a Claim Preparation Consultant or Forensic Accountant to help calculate and present the claim to the insurance adjuster and their team of experts on your behalf. The consultant’s fees may be recoverable as part of the claim. Brown & Brown can provide vendor recommendations.
  • Commence with reconstruction. This should be coordinated with the adjuster to ensure agreement on the scope of work and how invoices will be issued (competitive bid, agreed lump sum or time & materials basis).
  • Track and document all loss-related repair expenses (emergency response, temporary repairs, reconstruction, inventories, etc.).
  • Identify and document loss-related issues that impair operations, which may include: direct physical damage at your location(s), infrastructure damage (bridges, roadways, etc.), utility interruption (sewer, power, gas, etc.), damaged facilities of customers/suppliers and orders issued by civil/ governmental entities. For issues that do not originate at your location, confirm the specific cause and site where the damage occurred.
  • Provide claim submissions to the adjuster, including itemized calculations, supporting documentation (proposals, invoices, purchase orders, etc.) and narratives of costs incurred.
  • Prepare overall damage estimates and communicate potential loss exposures with the adjuster to help ensure they understand the total impact on your business.
  • Request advance payments from your insurer as necessary. It is essential to communicate timelines for payment expectations with the adjuster well in advance to allow adequate time for evaluation and processing.
  • Review insurer’s inquiries to claim submissions and collaborate with Brown & Brown on a strategic response.
  • Prepare for final claim settlement negotiations with the adjuster/insurer.

For more information on hurricane preparation:

Hurricane Preparation | A Guide for Businesses, Homeowners and Boaters

Property & Casualty Team