If you have never heard or have questions about the Assignment of Benefits document, read this message from a property owner who believed she was benefiting from what is actually a scam.
Imagine that. A sunny Saturday morning. There is a knock on the door when you are finishing breakfast. It's a man from a roofing company. It offers you a free roof inspection because a windstorm has been in the area a few months earlier. You accept. Surprisingly, he finds wind damage and says you need a new roof.
That's what happened to me.
Panicked but still skeptical, I asked several questions, which he answered, citing Florida regulations. My confidence in him began to grow. Feeling that I was overwhelmed, he assured me that he would take care of everything with our insurance company and manage the entire process for us. All I had to do was sign a deal. Relieved of having one less thing on my plate, I signed anxiously.
Later my husband and I took a second look at the deal. Imagine our disbelief when we discovered that the deal contained language that gave the contractor full control over the insurance claim. By signing the agreement, I inadvertently gave up our rights and agreed to:
I authorize my insurance company to make all claims to the contractor, grant the mortgage company permission to speak with the contractor, pay for any additional work or updates not approved by our insurance company.
To make matters worse, our roof is undamaged. The contractor lied about the damage. We have been taken back and want to do everything we can to alert other owners of this cunning and misleading scheme.
Protect yourself from being a victim of insurance fraud by never, ever signing something that you have not read or completely understood - don't just use the contractor's word "hired" for it. No agreement is required to report an insurance claim. Remember, your first step is to contact your insurance company immediately if your home is damaged or if you suspect damage. We consider ourselves quite experienced, but we are still mistaken. The best things in life are free, but there is no roof for free.