Fire Damage Claims Lawyer

Legal Representation For Fire Loss Victims In The Greater San Francisco Bay Area

Dealing with the aftermath of a major fire can be legally complex and emotionally overwhelming. The Law Offices of Bruce C.F. McArthur is dedicated to helping you recover from this ordeal by obtaining a full, fair and reasonable settlement from your insurer.

I am an experienced attorney who focuses on representing property owners (owners of homes, townhomes, condos, etc., and commercial property owners) as well as renters, in fire damage claims, throughout the greater San Francisco Bay Area (and beyond). I extend a free consultation to discuss your situation and how I can help.

Fire Damage And Homeowners Insurance

Even what appears to be a relatively small residential fire can sometimes turn out to be much more serious. Residential fires typically involve direct fire damage to some portion of the dwelling. There is generally additional damage, however, caused by heat, smoke and by water (water damage can result from firefighting efforts or sprinkler systems). Smoke and water damage are sometimes more extensive and more costly to repair, than fire damage. The firefighting process sometimes further increases the damage, such as when firefighters break out doors or windows to gain entry, or cut holes in roofs or walls to check for damage or to combat the fire.

The usual source of payment for fire repairs is a homeowners insurance policy, which covers the cost of fire repairs to a home, and usually also covers replacement of a home’s contents (and other items). See examples of damages potentially covered by insurance.

However, every insurance policy is different; each contains its own dollar limits and deductibles, and its own terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions. Policy provisions and insurance coverage issues can play a major role in the adjustment of a fire claim by limiting what an insurer is obligated to pay for your loss. I will help you understand your insurance policy and to obtain all the benefits that your particular policy provides.

Please see my case results page for details of actual fire (and water) loss recoveries I have obtained for my clients. My detail-oriented approach to evaluating your loss, and my background in insurance litigation, construction litigation, and construction cost estimating are useful in helping my clients maximize their recoveries, within the bounds of their policy and the applicable law.

I Can Explain The Fire Recovery Process

A serious residential fire (or flood) may involve a variety of activities that directly concern your insurance company and your insurance policy, such as:

  • Sorting through and inventorying the contents of your home, including furniture, electronics, clothing, food, appliances, tools and other items (usually thousands of individual items) and pricing them;
  • Removing, cleaning and storing salvageable personal property;
  • Emergency board-up and tarping to prevent further damage to your home, and to minimize vandalism;
  • Testing for, and disposing of, toxic substances;
  • Disposing of construction debris and damaged/destroyed personal goods;
  • Relocating you and your family pending the completion of repairs to your home;
  • Emergency expenditures and advances;
  • Assessing the fire and other damage to your home and contents; and determining the cost of replacement.

Without representation, all of these activities (and others) will be controlled by, or at least strongly influenced by, your insurance company, whose interests conflict with yours. The result may not be what you had in mind. I can provide you with service and assistance with all of the above. In particular I will assist you in determining what must be done to rebuild your house and how much it should cost, and will do my best to persuade your insurance company to pay the full cost of repairs (subject to the monetary and other limits of your particular insurance policy), so that you can afford a quality repair.

If you are uninsured, call me anyway, and I will discuss your situation with you, and evaluate whether or not I can be of assistance. I have successfully represented a number of uninsured individuals or families in fire loss claims.

Let’s Discuss The Unique Considerations Of Your Claim

At the Law Offices of Bruce C. F. McArthur, I provide clients with a free initial consultation. I would like to talk with you about your fire (or water or other serious property) loss, the nature and amount of your homeowners insurance coverage, any problems you may be experiencing in dealing with your insurance company, and the particular concerns that prompted you to consult a lawyer.

Call me and I will explain how I can represent you in a cost effective manner, and how I can improve the overall outcome of your fire or water damage claim, financially and otherwise.