Career insurance adjusters are important to society. The adjuster’s job is difficult because it requires the ability to work well with other people, knowledge, and technical skills. It is a trade where experience can teach much more than any book or course. Most well meaning and experienced insurance claim adjusters get their customers’ claims paid without hassle and in a spirit of cooperation–sometimes well beyond the actual policy terms and conditions.

In the insurance world, parties often demonize their opposition. I suppose that I am as guilty as anybody–but just because somebody disagrees and advocates a position opposed to yours does not make them unethical or deserving of ridicule.

The Insurance Journal has a Webcast of CPCU President Marvin Kelly regarding the bad rap many well meaning and dedicated professionals get in the insurance industry. The CPCU Society has an exemplary Code of Ethics and stellar educational program. Many CPCU’s are in claims management and dedicated to serving their company’s policyholders.

Since my legal practice and work for policyholders generally involves claims denials and problems, I am surrounded by situations where the insurance industry is (I argue) wrong. I do not always recognize the things insurance companies do that benefit individual customers and society. There are occasions when we get retained immediately following a loss and the claim runs smoothly from the beginning to end, with the policyholder being fully indemnified, happy, and the relationships between us and the insurer are professional and very cooperative. Those instances do not make the paper, and even I admit we fail to give enough credit to those insurance adjusters and attorneys in the trenches that do their job professionally and ethically day after day.

  • shirley heflin

    Funny you should write a blog like this today, because I was recently thinking about how much credit defense attorneys deserve as opposed to plaintiff attorneys. Think about it – when they get a case, just about everything is factually against them. One of the only certain things they have in their favor is that they’re getting paid by the hour whereas the plaintiff’s attorney is usaully working on a percentage and taking a chance that way; but, the factual odds are usually on the plaintiff attorneys side.

    As a Legal Secretary for plaintiff attorneys MOST of my adult life, I feel as if I was brainwashed into thinking that defense attorneys and insurance adjusters were the “enemies.” It is only now when I’m standing back that I can see who the true heroes are.

    SHIRLEY HEFLIN

  • Shirley,

    I wouldn’t go that far!

    I do not know any insurance company attorneys going broke, but I certainly know quite a few consumer attorneys that have risked too much in a “good cause” and then ended up on the losing end factually and financially.

    My Post was the result of me pondering my opponents in a very stressful matter and settlement conference over the last couple days and nights. As you suggest, when you think about a matter from the other’s perspective and put yourself in their shoes, at least you can appreciate another perspective even though you may disagree with it.

    The work of insurance adjustment is very difficult if done properly.

  • Richard Myers

    Here are three fun situations I hear about nearly every other day..

    1. What is the most recent update for all states about mortgage companies holding checks?
    *Especially, If the insured is update on payments?
    *Also if the insured is being delayed more due to lack of funds to make repairs.
    *Also can or will a mortage company hire and pay contractors?
    *The insured has made attempt verbally and email to have funds released.
    *The lender wants to release in 1/3rds or 1/2 or when all repairs are completed.

    3. What is the legal quote to argue the Insurance comapny should not hold depreciation or what is the maximum percentage they can depreciate?

  • Sidd @ Adjuster License

    Sticking to the subject, I believe that a lot depends on how educated a policy holder is at the time of purchase. If a sound coverage policy purchase has been made considering the threats of disasters, etc. and the cost of rebuilding is properly assessed, an adjuster can go through the claims process without much displeasure.