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Insurance commissioner offers tips

For Pike County residents who sustained damage from Monday night’s tornado and straight-line winds, there are several steps to take in the coming days. Cleaning up may seem like the best steps to take (and preventing further water damage is encouraged), but Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens says not to dispose of damaged property until it is examined by the insurance adjuster. Residents whose homes were damaged in the storm should contact their agent or insurance company immediately. They should protect their property from further damage by covering areas to prevent water damage from rain. Most policies will not cover damage that came after the storm. Residents should be sure to keep accurate records, including receipts for labor and material, of repair expenses and not dispose of damaged property until it is examined by the insurance adjuster.   Typical homeowner’s or commercial property policies do not cover removal of downed trees, unless the tree falls on a covered structure, such as the house.   Hail damage to cars is typically covered by the comprehensive/collision portion of automobile insurance policies; hail damage to homes is covered by by homeowners policies.   Policies will normally cover contents at their cash value, which means their used value; however, most companies offer a replacement cost option, which will pay for new items.  

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