Can you imagine your 85-year-old grandmother or your uncoordinated friend who has never climbed a ladder going up on a slanted roof and inspecting it for wind or hail damage after a storm? Most insurance company lawyers argue the position that their client’s customers have to do this to satisfy the requirement that a loss must be reported “promptly.”
Continue Reading Arkansas Insurance Department Recognizes That Policyholders Do Not Normally Climb on Roofs To Inspect For Damage

The litigation trickle regarding coronavirus coverage issues is turning into a flood as lawsuits seem to be filed every day and in many different jurisdictions. United Policyholders has established a COCID-19 Loss Recovery Advisory Team which included a stellar panel of insurance attorneys including Merlin Law Group attorney Ed Eshoo:

COVID-19 Loss Recovery Advisory Team
John Buchanan, Covington & Burling (DC)
John Ellison, Reed Smith (PA)
Edward Eshoo, Merlin Law Group (IL)
Peter Kochenburger, UConn School of Law (CT)
Lorelie S. Masters, Hunton Andrews Kurth (DC)
Jason Mazer, Cimo Mazer Mark (FL)
Sherilyn Pastor, McCarter & English, (NJ)
Holly Soffer, Kellis Soffer, Counsel to the American Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (PA)
Continue Reading United Policyholders in the Lead Regarding Education of COVID-19 Loss Recovery and For Policyholders

Due to the extensive loss and damage that wildfires have caused to California insureds in the last several years, the legislature has continued to pass changes to the law that benefit policyholders. We are only a little more than a quarter through 2020 and the legislature continues to focus on expanding policyholders’ rights.
Continue Reading California Legislature Introduces Even More Policyholder Friendly Legislation and Regulations

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has issued multiple Public Health Orders including 20-20, 20-22, 20-23, and 20-24 (collectively “Orders”), which have limited otherwise normal business and personal interactions and activities. Due to this unprecedented impact on employment and business activities, the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies – Division of Insurance (“DOI”) has recognized the impacts to the self-quarantine requirements for Colorado policyholders.
Continue Reading The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, Division of Insurance, Directs Insurance Carriers to Make Reasonable Accommodations to Policyholders Pursuant to Stay at Home Orders

The Consumer Federation of America and New York’s Law School’s Center For Justice and Democracy issued a study today, How the Cash Rich Insurance Industry Fakes Crises and Invents Social Inflation. I would suggest readers read this study and also consider my post from last week, How Playing the Float, Taking Depreciation on Labor or Tear Out Is Needed Cheating For Many Insurance Companies, where I had a long quote from Warren Buffet about how insurance companies make big money on the float.
Continue Reading Do Insurance Carriers Create a Crisis to Obtain Rate Increase and Anti-Consumer Changes to Insurance Laws?

Back in November of 2019, Chip, Jesse Sipe, Brett Rosen and I met with New Jersey Commissioner Marlene Caride and her team in Trenton. The meeting was very informative and a good start to hopefully a long-standing relationship between the Professional Public Adjusters Association of New Jersey, the plaintiff’s Bar, and the Commissioner’s office.
Continue Reading New Jersey Insurer’s Propaganda Machine Alive and Well

Unfair claims practices in Puerto Rico was the point of the New York Times article noted in, Puerto Rico Hurricane Maria Claims Still Not Paid—New York Times Reports on the Insurance Claims Crisis in Puerto Rico. Merlin Law Group attorney Chris Mammel and I were talking about the deceptive releases in Puerto Rico and he reminded me that Florida put an end to this wrongful claim practice by issuing a Bulletin following Hurricane Andrew.
Continue Reading Property Insurance Unfair Claims Practices Caused By Releases and Checks Citing “Final Payment”

Don’t trust the peasants to elect their own insurance commissioner! At least that is what the insurance lobbyists, insurance company executives, and many of our own elected politicians seem to agree upon. Yet, insurance is one of the most significant expenses that impacts people’s lives outside of taxes.
Continue Reading Florida To Have an Elected Insurance Commissioner?

Laws impacting policyholders is something Merlin Law Group attorneys are concerned about. We try to be the Policyholder’s Advocate® by our actions and not just pay lip service to it. So, we often travel to meet with legislators and regulators in various states about policyholder rights.

Dan Ballard was in the New Jersey legislature two weeks ago supporting a bad faith bill to help policyholders. I found myself in Tallahassee this Tuesday speaking against a bill which would change the manner attorneys fees are determined by courts. Since a few policyholders will certainly not be able to afford to pay an attorney out of their pocket and find attorneys willing to take their cases based on the change in the law, I spoke against it—but was given a grand total of about 2 minutes to speak! Why have hearings about bills if the public cannot participate?
Continue Reading Do Florida Legislators Care More About Their Gun Laws Not Being Followed Than Policyholders?

The vast majority of my adult professional career has been advocacy for policyholders trying to convince their own insurance companies to pay for claims their customers have made. After hearing countless stories and knowing the various battles fought, a number of my colleagues and friends kept pushing me to write a book on the topic and what I have learned.
Continue Reading Pay Up! Preventing a Disaster With Your Own Insurance Company