It’s tough to find a suitable apartment for yourself, especially if you’re bringing along your family. Most of the time, people struggle with this because the average cost of renting is higher than the minimum salary in most states.
I mean just imagine how tragic it would be to lose your house because of a fire. Typically, an arson defense attorney would handle these cases. And what do they suggest you do?
1. Notify everyone
If you have noticed smoke coming from an unknown source or that the smoke detector has ringed, it may be best to get in touch with your instinct and do your best to shout as loud as possible.
This would inform the other tenants that a fire is currently happening, making them likely to take any action to exit the building.
Once you’re safe, you must call the nearest fire station to alleviate the incident’s damage and potentially save the tenants who could not leave the building.
Don’t forget that it’ll be a wise decision to contact your landlord regarding the matter if they went out of town or were running errands. After all, they’re responsible for the apartment.
2. Reach out to the insurance company
Since there’s damage on the property, there’s a higher chance that your insurance company would want to hear about the matter.
After being notified, you could expect that the insurance company would send their investigators or adjusters to your location to discuss the situation.
It’s crucial that you don’t delay this process. So filing casualty loss, for instance, could be taken care of right away.
It will help if the tenants have talked with the fire department since they would be the ones who would record the incident. Additionally, it’s part of their job to identify the cause of the fire, such as electrical issues, cooking, or candle burning.
3. Secure the property
Since a fire just occurred, it can’t be helped that people would be curious. But arson lawyers generally don’t advise that you permit others who don’t live in the building to enter the property unless they’re the authorities.
The reason is that trespassing would result in further damages to the evidence found in the building. Not to mention the amount of vandalism that would litter its walls.
In worst cases, someone might be injured, and you’ll be liable for their care and expenses.
In this case, it’s recommended that you restrict all the entry units and using plywoods to prevent your windows from being broken.
It may also be a good idea to cover the exposed areas with tarps and heavy-duty plastics to keep them dry, as you would want to document everything for legal purposes.
This means that taking photos and recording information as part of documentation would help you get the proper compensation from your respective insurance company and even minimize the liability and payouts.
As a further step, you might also consider talking to the authorities involved, so you could identify if you’ll be liable for the financial reimbursements due to the fire.
If the incident was caused by an electrical issue, like a damaged AC unit, it’s expected that your chances of winning the case would decrease as you’ll be found accountable.
Of course, it would be covered by insurance. However, it’s worth noting that your insurance costs would likely spike due to the case.
No one is prepared to face this kind of incident. It’s unprecedented, but it doesn’t mean that everyone would be innocent.
What’s important is that you call an arson attorney to guide you to the best course of action based on your situation. Else, you might face more than just losing a home.