The Mid-Atlantic Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (MAPIA) held a meeting this past week with about thirty-five public adjusters in attendance. President Paul Yemm, yours truly, Holly Soffer, and Tony DiUlio are pictured above. Soffer and Diulio gave a wonderful insurance gaps presentation that was highlighted Tony DiUlio’s discussion of a water loss that resulted in a bad faith verdict against State Farm. Continue Reading Water Loss From Toilet Overflow Is Covered Despite State Farm Denial

While working on and researching for answers to questions posed by Professor Feinman regarding the growing insurance coverage gaps crisis, I came across a very pointed article published about how modern insurance company claims practices are destroying the construction restoration industry. Continue Reading Policyholders and Contractors Unite Against Wrongful Insurance Company Claims Practices

Insurance estimators, appraisers, and adjusters of roofing claims should read the attached partial specifications of a commercial roofing project. There has been some discussion of what a “reasonable” cost should be, but I think most would require that the scope of a commercial roofing job involving insurance be one that is going to result in a “quality” job. So, how do you determine what a quality commercial roofing job would be? I suggest you would look at specifications that the construction industry has come up with to prevent non-quality work from occurring. Continue Reading Roofing Project Specifications—The Details Required For Quality Roofing Insurers Rarely Pay For Or Mention in Estimates

Some of the more interesting discussions about property insurance losses which I have read lately come from Steve Patrick’s “Level The Playing Field” Facebook Group. Recently, Leland Coontz wrote the following:

I’ve been triggered again. Someone mentioned on Facebook that ‘The insured is not allowed to profit from their loss.’ Show me your law license and I might respect your wrong opinion. But it would still be wrong.

His post triggered over 130 comments with very different opinions. Continue Reading Can A Policyholder Profit From A Loss?

I want to pass along a Thanksgiving Wish sent today by Angel Rivera, an attorney in our San Juan, Puerto Rico office, to everyone in the firm:

To all of my fellow attorneys at MLG Puerto Rico, and at MLG everywhere, and to all the excellent assistants at MLG Puerto Rico, whom I consider friends, may you all have a great Happy Thanksgiving weekend with your loved ones. Give thanks that you are still able to enjoy your folks, brothers, sisters, and some of you even your grandparents. Several years from now some of them will not be around, so take advantage that you have them all with you and enjoy each and every one of them to the fullest. Even your children, you don’t know if they’ll be with you in the future, since they, like mine, may choose to live in another state and may not be present at your table for this most American of all our celebrations!

Give thanks for the very nice meal, for your health, for the miracles, both large and small that happen every day around you, from waking up every day, being able to see beautiful flowers and the sunlight, to the birth of another child, give thanks!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all, enjoy the great day and greater company, Un abrazo a todos y muchas gracias por ser mis amigos, Angel.

Policyholders who have delayed and underpaid insurance claims from Hurricane Michael may think about taking a page from the “how to file a complaint” playbook from an Old Mutual policyholder who sent the dead body to the claims department to collect on a funeral insurance policy. Continue Reading Hurricane Michael Delayed Insurance Claim Victims Should Send Parts of Their Homes and Businesses To Their Insurers In Protest

The person that can qualify as an appraiser for a policyholder in Colorado is still a guess with policyholders not exactly knowing what to do about the selection of their appraiser. One Colorado insurance company law firm has their clients select very biased appraisers against their own customers and then challenges almost all policyholder appraisers as biased. This firm with their clients’ blessings, then tries to have the customer collect nothing arguing that the customer breached the policy by selecting a “biased” appraiser while having a “polecat” selected in the wings as their own appraiser. Continue Reading Colorado Law Regarding Who Can Be An Appraiser is Still A Guess For Policyholders and the Insurance Industry – Colorado Is Looking For Guidance

(NOTE: This guest post is by Barry Zalma, Esq., CFE.1 Barry Zelma is a prolific writer and scholar in the field of insurance. I have purchased numerous publications from Barry. I am currently reading a book on legal ethics he wrote, The Little Book on Ethics For The American Lawyer, which may be his finest work and that is saying a lot after reading his treatises on insurance law and adjustment. I encourage you to read this very thorough post and consider purchasing Zalma’s publications for your reference library. – Chip Merlin.)

A Policyholders Lawyer’s Take on the Obligation to Read

In its blog the Merlin Law Group cites a small portion of a lengthy Hastings Law Journal article written by Professor Chuck Knapp.2 Dr. Knapp did not like the use, by appellate courts, of the concept that there is a duty to read (DTR) an insurance policy.

The blog post by Chip Merlin proposed that Dr. Knapp’s proposals would allow the court to rewrite the terms and conditions of the policy. Dr. Knapp did not do that but spent many pages explaining why the word “duty” should not be used and the exceptions available to the courts when interpreting an insurance contract as well as other contracts. Continue Reading There is an Obligation for the Insured to Read an Insurance Policy

Business owners and owners of commercial property should not buy Farmers Insurance. Virtually every insurance company in the United States considers the entire cost of restoration right away when making payments, including at actual cash value—except Farmers Insurance. Farmers Insurance has declared war on its own customers and independent restoration contractors. Continue Reading Farmers Insurance Sells Substandard Commercial Policy and Business Owners Should Not Purchase Farmers Insurance

United Policyholders takes action and gets things done for policyholders regarding the insurance gap issue. United Policyholders is tackling the insurance gap coverage problem by providing staff and resources to collect rogue property insurance policy forms being issued by insurance companies, to show examples of how insurers are stepping over each other to silently gain a competitive advantage of lower price with cheap insurance. Continue Reading Crazy New Policy Language? Report It To United Policyholders!