How I Can Help You
I don't get paid until you get paid—and my work is free if you don't receive more than your insurance company's original settlement offer. My fees are covered by a portion of those additional funds, which often double the original offer.
These Hometown News articles explain more about my work and how it could benefit you.
Hometown News – Vero Beach
Friday, October 4, 2019
By Mike Winikoff
INDIAN RIVER COUNTY - When you suffer a loss from a hurricane, tornado, fire, or other calamity, the last thing you want to focus on is handling an insurance claim. You’ve got enough other things to deal with, and you certainly don’t want to get into a fight with your insurance company.
That’s where Steven L. Philipson comes in. His company, Accredited Public Insurance Adjustor of Indian River County, will handle that process with no financial risk to you.
“If we can’t get more money for your claim than the insurance company’s original offer, our work is free,” Mr. Philipson told Hometown News.
“Insurance companies typically underestimate the value of losses. When a client receives a settlement offer, I evaluate the losses with realistic totals and present those to the insurance company. The original offer belongs 100% to the client. I only get paid if the insured receives additional funds based on my work. My fee is just a modest percentage of the additional reimbursement.”
So there’s no financial downside to contacting Steve, just potential upside. You can only do better, but can’t do worse.
Attorneys and public insurance adjusters are the only people allowed by law to represent and pursue another party's interests in an insurance claim. Mr. Philipson has been licensed and bonded by the state of Florida as a public insurance adjustor since 2005.
Steve Philipson moved to Indian River County in 1972 and became a general contractor in 1984. After the hurricanes in 2004 and 2005, he found a lot of people needed help getting enough money to fully repair their property. So he got his public insurance adjuster license in 2005.
“I am still a fully licensed general contractor, and used to make my living as a general contractor,” Mr. Philipson said. “That’s given me the background to be able to look at a loss and make sure everything is included, because I know what goes into construction.”
Mr. Philipson brings to the table both the knowledge that an insurance adjustor must have, and the body of knowledge a general contractor possesses. That combination gives him more insight into the problems the homeowner has experienced and how to solve those problems.
“I work for the homeowners to get the fair claim they are looking for. Insurance companies employ adjusters and will assign one to your claim, but their adjuster represents the insurance company's interests, not yours. We work exclusively for you, not the insurance company.”
Here’s how the process works: after you suffer an insured loss, notify your insurance company as soon as possible.
“Notify me when you have received an estimate from your insurance company,” Mr. Philipson said. “You should get the settlement you deserve according to your policy with your insurance company. I can advise you on how to determine if you are being treated fairly.”
As he tells clients, your loss must be real, and valuations must be accurate. By law, you cannot profit from the claim. But you should receive whatever your policy promises you will receive.
“Insurance companies, and the adjusters employed by them, rely on pricing databases to determine the value of your losses,” Mr. Philipson said. “The databases often don't reflect actual market price for repair costs in your specific area, and evaluations indicate a pattern of underpayment on damage claims.”
For this reason, Mr. Philipson’s location, on Live Oak Drive in Vero Beach, and his experience as a general contractor in Indian River County are key. He can figure out what it will cost to fix your damage here, based on locally available labor and material prices.
Evaluating losses can be one of the most stressful times of your life. Let Steven Philipson inventory and estimate those losses, compare that estimate to your insurer’s offer, and then work with them to achieve a fair payment. In the unlikely event that you receive no more than your insurance company’s original offer, you pay nothing.
Claims covered include hurricanes, tornadoes, fire, water, wind, hail, mold, broken pipes, flooding, roofing issues, and loss of income.
For more information about the services of Steven Philipson and Accredited Public Insurance Adjustor of Indian River County, contact him for a free consultation without obligation. Call (772) 696-5585, email [email protected], or visit www.apiafla.com. License #E170409.
Friday, March 2, 2007
Jay Meisel, Associate Managing Editor
After working 30 years as a general contractor, Steve Philipson knows a lot about the costs of construction and repairs. With that experience in mind, Mr. Philipson noted that after the hurricanes in 2004 and 2005, a lot of people needed help in getting enough money to fully repair their hurricane-damaged properties.
Knowing the true cost of repairs because of his work as a contractor, he decided to become an accredited public insurance adjuster. As an adjuster, Mr. Philipson said, he works to convince the insurance companies to provide property owners with enough money to make all the repairs on their damaged property.
His relationship with his property owners is one where the client can’t lose. “If I can’t get them additional money, I don’t charge them anything,” he said. “Only if I get additional money, do I collect a fee. It’s a no-lose situation.” Generally, Mr. Philipson said, a person, whose property was damaged by a hurricane, fire, water or mold contacts him after he or she is dissatisfied with an offer from an insurance company. Only after he does an extensive inspection of the property and creates a line item list of the damages does he ask the client to sign a contract. His estimates are based on accepted costs for the area in which the property is located.
He finds that the insurance company’s offer often doesn’t cover the repair costs. He said in most cases he does obtain more money for the clients. “Twice the amount (of what the insurance company offers) has been more typical than not,” he said. In a couple of rare cases, his findings showed that the insurance company’s offer was correct. But a case involving a house up the street from where he lives in Wabasso is more typical. That house had a lot of damage because of a leaky roof after Hurricane Jeanne. The water had damaged cabinets, drywall and electrical fixtures. His evaluation showed the damages were about $200,000, although the insurance company only offered $90,000. In the end, Mr. Philipson said, the insurance company agreed to pay $183,000. Mr. Philipson's fee was based only on the $93,000 difference between the original offer and the amount he was able to secure for the clients, not the full amount of the settlement. A WIN-WIN situation for both.
After he submits his estimation — if the insurance company doesn’t agree with it — a mediation process begins, which often takes about 10 weeks. “Usually it is settled at mediation,” Mr. Philipson said. But if an agreement can’t be reached at mediation, the situation goes to an appraisal where he and the insurance company agree on an umpire. The umpire’s decision is final, he said. That process can take 10 weeks. Mr. Philipson represents clients on the Treasure Coast, and as far south as Fort Lauderdale. He said clients appreciate that they deal directly with him from the start.
He can be reached at (772) 696-5585.