When you work with Jansen/Adjusters International to settle your property damage claim, a public adjuster isn’t the only member of your recovery team. In addition to our own team of public adjusters, estimators, and contents inventory specialists, we partner with contractors and industry professionals to ensure that our public adjusters have the tools they need to successfully navigate and negotiate your claim.
Jansen has partnered with Childress Engineering Services (CES) experts in forensic engineering, residential and commercial building design, and emergency disaster response for more than 15 years to establish causation for our clients. Childress was founded in 1994 to help its clients investigate building structural issues or damage to building envelopes, which is the separation between the interior and exterior of a structure. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Childress became an instrumental partner within the public adjusting community to provide both Jansen public adjusters and our clients with the engineering knowledge and expertise for property damage and the subsequent rebuilding process.
Partnering with experts in their respective fields has many advantages: from pre-disaster and post-disaster recovery to rebuilding, there are many ways an engineering consultant’s firm can help with the public adjusting process. Here are just a few of them:
Immediately Following a Disaster
When public adjusters advocate on behalf of policyholders, they will sometimes obtain the services of an engineering firm at the beginning of a claim. Experts from the firm will assess the damaged property to determine and document the damage's extent and exact cause. Though damage can occur from just one storm or disaster, it is important to determine whether specific portions of the destruction are from wind, water, or other causes. This information from an industry professional can help public adjusters negotiate with the insurance company based on the available coverages in a policy. Having a professional engineer examine the damage can also provide insight into how to conduct the repairs.
Even before the documentation for a claim can happen, though, the damaged buildings must be safe to enter. To do so, engineering firms will stabilize the building through what is known as “lifesaving support,” making the property safe for adjusters, insurance personnel, and recovery teams to enter. These measures allow damage to be investigated safely and provides a way for any intact materials to be salvaged.
Post Disaster Recovery
After the initial damage has been examined and documented, the claim will fall into the public adjusters’ hands to prepare, file, and present it to the insurance company. The timing of this process will vary depending on the type of disaster, the damage extent, and the claim's complexity. Our professional public adjusters use the information to negotiate a fair and just settlement based on the terms of a client’s policy.
Once the public adjuster and insurance carrier settle the claim, the repair and/or rebuilding process can begin. Here too, having a professional residential and commercial engineer can provide a substantial amount of value to the policyholder. They can determine the best course of action for reconstruction based on the extent and cause of the damage. Reconstruction can pose some complex issues, especially if the damaged structure is older and requires new materials and construction to ensure it is up to current-day codes.
An engineering firm can also help home, and business owners protect their properties before a disaster strikes.
Whether building damage is caused by natural phenomena, fire, water, or some other form of damaging event, it can cause most property owners to worry about the safety of their properties. For example, after the devastating collapse of the condominium complex in Florida in the summer of 2021, many building owners with similar structures in the area naturally began to fear their own housing complexes. In such situations, property owners can consult with an engineering firm to evaluate their building and ensure everything is up to standard building code and structurally sound. Engineering firms will complete an assessment of the building and identify any potential problems, providing important information that can help policyholders mitigate or limit damage from any disasters that might occur in the future.
Public adjusters are always on the policyholder’s side regarding property damage claims. As your advocates, it’s our responsibility to form a recovery team of experts necessary to support your claim. That is why Jansen/Adjusters International partners with firms that can establish causation to ensure our clients get the best information available.