It’s been nearly a year and a half since Hurricane Maria, and victims are still struggling with insurance companies over property damage claims. Commonly used insurance software could help policyholders get their rightful compensation, but some insurance companies in Puerto Rico are refusing to use it. It’s called Xactimate, and while you likely have never heard of it, it’s crucial to the insurance claims industry.
What is Xactimate?
Xactimate is software used by insurance adjusters, insurance companies, and contractors, among others, to estimate the cost of building and repairing properties. Many insurance companies use Xactimate or a similar software platform to value insurance claims. Xactimate contains pricing databases for all sorts of materials, labor, products, and consumer goods so an estimate of damages can easily and quickly be put together. Xactimate also adjusts prices for specific to locations to ensure estimates include objective pricing. Xactimate’s calculations are considered an objective industry standard for valuing insurance claims.
Insurers Refuse To Use Xactimate On Hurricane Maria Insurance Claims
Insurance companies in Puerto Rico are frequently refusing to use Xactimate, instead, relying on subjective, non-standard methods to value insurance claims. Insurance companies are doing this in an effort to devalue claims and reduce the amount of money they have to pay out to policyholders. For an island already devastated by a natural disaster, this unfair insurance practice comes as yet another blow.
Puerto Rico has had an incredibly slow recovery in part because the island’s infrastructure was damaged in the storm, but mainly because of the dilatory tactics of many insurance companies. To compound the problem, foreign reinsurers dominate most of the insurance market in Puerto Rico, and they are reluctant to process and pay out on claims. This has led to policyholders waiting for months to hear the outcome of their claims, extreme undervaluation of damages, and outright denials. The only choice for many policyholders is to pursue a legal claim in order to obtain their rightful compensation.