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Fry Your Bird, Not Your Castle

Frying the turkey for Thanksgiving has become increasingly popular over other, more traditional, turkey-cooking methods. Are you considering frying your turkey bird for this upcoming Thanksgiving meal? If so, you may also want to consider the risks associated with this trending and flavorful frying technique.… Continue Reading

Matching Protections for Hurricane Irma Claims in Florida

In 1990, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners adopted a new section to its model regulations relating to unfair property claims.1 Section 9 of the model regulation provides:2 A. When the policy provides for the adjustment and settlement of first-party losses based on replacement cost, the following shall apply: *** (2) When a loss requires … Continue Reading

Claims Handling Requirements by State – Colorado

Up next in the state-by-state claims handling tour is the Centennial State – Colorado. Colorado property owners have been devastated by massive hail storms over the last several years so it is very important that policyholders and their representatives are aware of the claim handling requirements of the state. Colorado’s claim handling is governed by … Continue Reading

Nationwide Insurance Adjuster Mistakes Flowers for Pot—Nationwide Insurance Policyholders Wrongfully Arrested

Nationwide Insurance Company claims managers may need to add botany and common-sense training to their claims education program. A Nationwide claims specialist sent photos of hibiscus plants to police indicating that Nationwide policyholders with a fallen tree loss were growing marijuana. The Nationwide policyholders look straight out of central casting as the “perfect aging couple” … Continue Reading

(T)exas (W)indstorm (I)nsurance (A)ssociation (TWIA) Important information and Deadlines for Hurricane Harvey Claims

According to TWIA’s website, as of November 15, 2017, TWIA has received 72,902 claims related to Hurricane Harvey. So, what happens next? Many of TWIA’s policies, procedures and deadlines are different from that of a typical homeowner’s policy. Thus, it is imperative you read your policy to ensure no deadlines are missed. Below are important … Continue Reading

Recent Bulletins from the Virgin Islands Division of Banking, Insurance and Financial Regulation

The Virgin Islands Division of Banking, Insurance and Financial Regulation recently issued two bulletins.1 The first, Bulletin 2017-07, required property and casualty insurers, effective January 15, 2018, to maintain and submit to the Commissioner with its new or renewal application, a copy of its Catastrophe Response Plan for the benefit of its policyholders in the … Continue Reading

Overhead and Profit Should be Included with Payments Made on Actual Cash Value Basis

While many carriers continue their attempt to exclude overhead and profit from property damage claim payments made on an actual cash value basis, the majority approach across the United States has been to include general contractor overhead and profit in actual cash value payments for losses where repairs would be reasonably likely to require a … Continue Reading

Appellate Court Reverses Lower Court’s Dismissal of Plaintiffs Data-Breach Claim

In a win for third-party victims of a cyber security attack, the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia reversed a lower court’s decision dismissing a class-action suit against their health insurer for breach of contract, negligence, and violation of various state consumer-protection statutes, after their personal information was stolen during a data breach.1… Continue Reading

REMINDER – Professional Public Adjusters Association of New Jersey Meeting November 15, 2017!

Please join the Professional Public Adjusters Association of New Jersey (PPAANJ) at its Fall Meeting on November 15, 2017, at the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank, New Jersey. Continuing Education credits will be provided for New Jersey, New York & Pennsylvania. PPAANJ is pleased to announce that Mr. Joseph A. McDougal, Manager Licensing and … Continue Reading

FEMA Relief for the Houses of Worship that Provide Hurricane Relief?

Hurricane Harvey brought unprecedented flooding and destruction to Texas. Three churches have sued the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) seeking the ability to be awarded disaster relief grants available to other non-profit entities. In Harvest Family Church v. FEMA, three Texas churches damaged by Harvey are taking on a FEMA policy that does not allow … Continue Reading

Napa Wine Country Wildfire Town Hall

The recent fires in Napa Valley and Sonoma, California present numerous issues for homeowners and business owners alike when it comes to navigating insurance claims. Questions arise as to what coverages are provided under a given insurance policy, how determinations on what is owed are made, what are the options on rebuilding, loss of income … Continue Reading

What You Don’t Know About Ordinance or Law Coverage Can Hurt You!

Note: This guest blog post is by Brent Winans, Vice President of Clear Advantage Risk Management in Delray Beach, Florida (www.clearadvantagerisk.com). He provides fee-based (no insurance sales) risk management consulting services to larger clients and serves as an expert witness on both sides of agent errors and omissions cases across the country. Even if your … Continue Reading

Court Reaffirms on Contingency Fee Multipliers in Joyce v. Federated National

William and Judith Joyce filed a claim with their insurer, Federated National, after suffering water damage to their home. Instead of agreeing to cover the loss, Federated National denied the Joyces’ claim alleging they made material misrepresentations on their insurance application by failing to disclose prior losses they had with their previous carrier.… Continue Reading

Does the Standard Fire Policy Vacancy/Unoccupancy Condition Apply to a Fire Loss Occurring within Sixty Days of the Inception of Coverage?

I have handled many fire losses over the years involving vacant and/or unoccupied property.1 In some losses, the fire occurred within 60 days of the inception of coverage; but, the insured property had been vacant or unoccupied for more than 60 days prior to the effective date of coverage. Invariably, the insurers in those fire … Continue Reading

Small Business Manufacturers Should Purchase Equipment Breakdown Coverage

Chip Merlin, Ashley Harris and I settled an Equipment Breakdown Coverage (aka Mechanical Breakdown Coverage) lawsuit in New Jersey yesterday. Chip Merlin took this picture of Ashley and me after the settlement. While the settlement is confidential, there are a number of lessons to be learned and reasons why this coverage is so important to … Continue Reading

The Best Hurricane Insurance Seminar Regarding Hurricanes Irma and Maria—Seriously, This Is The Best!

Have you noticed that some seminars have just a few speakers and they are not in the middle of the issues, but pretenders? Harris Martin Publishers asked me to co-chair a Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma seminar and if you are an insurance attorney, public adjuster, insurance claims manager or governmental counsel with FEMA claims, … Continue Reading

Florida Valued Policy Law & Hurricane Irma

We recently received a requested blog topic for the following: FL Value Policy Law as it would apply with Hurricane Irma. If we have an insured with a Citizens policy with Cov A limit of $200,000 and our repair estimate is $180,000 should the value policy law be applied? Answer: It depends. (I’m a lawyer, … Continue Reading
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