The Appraisal Process in the National Flood Insurance Program works to resolve disputed property damage claims both residential and commercial after Hurricanes or other catastrophes. Insurers may compel appraisal or an owner may demand same. Look to your policy for the wording in each document and follow the words of the agreement. I have attached the appraisal process language below. The language should be followed like a list of requirements.
Excerpt From the National Flood Insurance Program Dwelling Form:
If you and we fail to agree on the actual cash value or, if applicable, replacement cost of your damaged property to settle upon the amount of loss, then either may demand an appraisal of the loss.
In this event, you and we will each choose a competent and impartial appraiser within 20 days after receiving a written request from the other.
The two appraisers will choose an umpire.
If they cannot agree upon an umpire within 15 days, you or we may request that the choice be made by a judge of a court of record in the State where the covered property is located.
The appraisers will separately state the actual cash value, the replacement cost, and the amount of loss to each item.
If the appraisers submit a written report of an agreement to us, the amount agreed upon will be the amount of loss.
If they fail to agree, they will submit their differences to the umpire.
A decision agreed to by any two will set the amount of actual cash value and loss, or if it applies, the replacement cost and loss.
Each party will:
- Pay its own appraiser; and
- Bear the other expenses of the appraisal and umpire equally.
Flood appraisal can be a cost-effective way of resolving a flood loss where the scope is agreed upon. The costs and specific repair and replacement methods can follow a good scope to gather agreement. John Minor at Complete is a Certified Floodplain Manager with specialized training on the NFIP and the floodplain rules adopted by the International Code Council. Mr. Minor and others on our staff are available for flood appraisal and umpire assignments.