Alconero and Associates - Who's To Blame For Apartment Fire Damages
12 Aug

House fires and apartment fires cause on average 3,000 deaths each year. In most cases, when a house catches fire, the homeowner is to blame. However, what happens when the fire occurs in a rental or an apartment, and when the fire is caused by poor electrical power or some other cause? In that case, who is at fault?

When is the homeowner not liable for damages caused by a fire?

People think of house fires when they see individuals who have placed candles carelessly throughout the house, left curling irons on, or placed towels on an in-use stove top. Each of these causes of house fires can cause them, but they aren’t the only ones.

House or apartment fires are frequently caused by poor wiring, poorly constructed products, construction that does not meet code requirements, and other factors that the occupant or homeowner cannot control. 

It is possible for a third party to be held responsible for your injuries and losses in several ways, but to determine who is responsible for the fire damages, your public adjuster may need to conduct an investigation and obtain a copy of the fire report from the fire department.

When can the landlord be held liable for the fire damage?

Many times, a negligent landlord can be held liable for fire damages.

If it is determined that negligence was involved in the fire in the rental property, your landlord can be held liable for any damages

  • Did you rent a house that had a properly designed electrical system?
  • Did you inform the landlord in writing if it did not?
  • Was the electrical system upgraded by the landlord as requested?
  • Is the landlord’s fire safety system adequate?
  • Did you notify him or her, in writing, that you wanted the system updated as required by law?
  • Was the alarm system maintained by the landlord?
  • Has the landlord complied with fire safety codes?
  • Are there fire suppression systems provided by the landlord?
  • Is there a secure exit from each apartment unit?
  • Could the fire have been prevented in any way?

Ultimately, you must be able to prove that the landlord willfully neglected the home’s electrical and safety systems in order to hold them liable for fire damages. Providing adequate documentation and a detailed fire report may make that easier.

What can a Public Adjuster do to help me after a fire damage?

Using a public adjuster for fire damage claims can help you in a number of different ways – here are just a few. 

They are trained to present facts and evidence of your claim in a fair, just manner, so that the insurance company cannot take advantage of you by using loopholes or failing to compensate you adequately.

In addition to identifying fire damage, your insurance adjuster can also identify water damage resulting from a broken pipe during the fire, ash damage, soot damage, and smoke damage – ensuring that all the damages and losses caused by the fire are properly logged and recorded.

A public adjuster can help you fight your insurance company for compensation if you anticipate loopholes and exceptions. In the event that your insurance company denies your claim or finds loopholes to minimize your payout, your public adjuster can anticipate these issues and provide supporting facts and evidence.

A public adjuster will be able to help you find contractors and cleanup/restoration services in the local area. After your claim is resolved, a public adjuster can help you find reputable contractors, fire/water cleanup and restoration services, and other professionals who can help restore your home or business. 

Conclusion

It’s important to remember that fire victims who live in rental apartments and houses will often be left with minimal payouts by their landlords and insurance adjusters. If you or someone you know has suffered from fire damage, contact Alconero Public Adjusters who services the areas of Miami, FL, Fort Lauderdale, FL, Palm Beach, FL,  Naples, FL, Fort Myers, FL, Cape Coral, FL, Sarasota, FL, Orlando, FL as soon as possible after the fire for a FREE inspection.

 

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