Team 10: Navigating home insurance nightmares

Posted at 12:14 PM, Feb 11, 2016
and last updated 2019-05-15 19:40:51-04

Team 10 started looking into insurance complaints after hearing from a San Diego woman whose home in Riverside County was trashed by vandals. Years ago, she survived a violent assault -- one that left her with debilitating injuries -- and now she's in a new fight with her insurance company after her claim was rejected.

SAN DIEGO -- Have you ever wondered where to turn to if your homeowners insurance company denies your claim?

The California Department of Insurance gets 170,000 calls each year to its Consumer Services Team, and many of the calls are complaints about insurance companies.

Since 2011, the team has recovered more than $306 million for consumers who complained that their insurance companies weren't helping them in their time of need.

If you disagree with the findings of your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is try to talk to the claims manager about why you feel the adjuster got it wrong. Provide copies of supporting documents to justify your appeal.

If that doesn't work, the next step is to contact the Department of Insurance at 800-927-4357 to speak to a Hotline officer. After listening to the information, the officer can decide to open an investigation.

Consumers can also fill out a complaint form online here.

When all else fails, consult an attorney who specializes in insurance law.