Hailstorms are on the rise in hail-prone states and policyholders must be prepared in case their home or business is damaged. According to NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center, there were approximately 4,600 reported hail incidents across the country with the largest spikes occurring from April to July.
Just recently, there were catastrophic hailstorms in both Oklahoma and Texas. Norman, Oklahoma’s recent hailstorm is projected to hit $500 million in damages according to local KOCO News outlet. One of our attorneys, J. Drew Houghton, had his Norman home significantly damaged from large-sized hail driven by 70 mph winds that broke windows, damaged furniture, led to water damage, and more. Drew’s experience and live videos of the hailstorm were discussed during a recent Facebook Live Tuesday @ 2 With Chip Merlin.
The hailstorm activity in Texas may yield a new state record for hail size, as there are reports of stones falling that are approximately six inches or greater. Fort Worth and San Antonio were among the areas hardest hit. According to Jonathan Porter, Senior Vice President and Chief Meteorologist of AccuWeather, the combined hailstorm damage costs for Oklahoma and Texas are predicted to be $3.5 billion.1
Even for an experienced property insurance professional like Drew, the immediate period following a hailstorm can be stressful. It is hard to imagine which step you should take first to protect your home from further damage and how to begin the claim process with your insurance company. Recognizing the difficulty, Merlin Law Group created a Policyholder’s Hailstorm Checklist to aid policyholders in navigating the time after a hailstorm loss.
This checklist includes valuable tips on immediate steps to take following a hailstorm. This includes photographing your property on multiple occasions (you may not notice certain damage on your first inspection!), vetting and hiring professional restoration services, keeping detailed notes of the claim process, policy information, and more! You can download the Policyholder’s Hailstorm Checklist here.
Policyholders must be proactive in protecting their insured property, determining insurance coverage, and documenting the damages following a loss. We understand the frustration and confusion that policyholders feel when dealing with hailstorm damage. Our checklist is designed to be a helpful resource that can help policyholders during the aftermath on a path to recovery.
If you ever need assistance with a hailstorm claim, please do not hesitate to reach out to one of our experienced attorneys. We have offices in both Oklahoma and Texas ready to assist policyholders affected by the recent catastrophic hailstorms.
1 Damages from hailstorms in Texas, Oklahoma Estimated to total $3.5B. Oklahoma Farm Report, April 30, 2021.