New Worry for Sandy Impacted Homeowners
Scam artists offering legal advice to help guide flood insurance policy holders through the Super storm Sandy claims review process is now a concern for homeowners still dealing with rebuilding issues more than two-and-a-half years after the hurricane, according to U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, D-N.J., Thursday.
Menendez, a former attorney, warned policy holders who may be eligible for more money through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's National Flood Insurance Program, lawyers are trying to solicit business.
"You don't need a middleman taking 30 percent of what you're already entitled to and been waiting too long to receive," said Menendez in a statement. "You have every right to an attorney, and there are organizations that will offer free services to ensure that you get 100 percent of what is owed to you."
As many as 142,000 post-Sandy victims could have their claims reviewed under FEMA's review process.
Some lawyers marketing their services to Sandy victims, including the Washington-based firm Weisbrod, Matteis & Copley, told the Asbury Park Press some flood insurance policy holders might never know how much of the money they've left on the table without representation.
WM&C partner August Matteis also pointed out thousands of Gulf Coast victims of Hurricane Katrina would disagree that Sandy victims shouldn't get a lawyer to handle the reopening of their claims. He told the Asbury Park Press trusting FEMA and its insurers will do the right thing is "naive, political or both."