It’s been a few months since we endured Winter Storm Uri. The storm had people stranded in the cold with no electricity, heat, or running water. Families were huddling around each other for warmth in parked cars and boiling water in their homes to drink. At the time of the storm, much of the focus was on the electric grid of Texas and why the infrastructure failed us in a time of need. Now, as claims come in, we are seeing an abundance of damage that is left unrepaired, unresolved, and overall unappreciated.
Continue Reading The Cold Truth About the Texas Winter Storm

Appraisal clauses, a common component of property insurance policies, set forth an alternative dispute resolution process by which the parties to an insurance contract can resolve disputes concerning the amount of a covered loss. While most property insurance policies’ appraisal clauses do not expressly set forth a time period to demand appraisal, waiver of the appraisal clause can occur if not timely invoked. Courts tasked with determining whether an appraisal clause was waived focus on whether the demand for appraisal was made within a “reasonable time.”
Continue Reading How Long Is Too Long To Demand Appraisal?

Civil procedure is the bane of most 1L law students’ existence. Personally, I was far more interested in reading about the trains in Torts than I was learning the rules of civil procedure. At that time, I could not imagine writing a blog about the pleading standards of affirmative defenses, nor could I imagine how interested in such a procedural topic I would become. My civil procedure professor affectionately referred to the U.S. Supreme Court decisions in Twombly and Iqbal as the Twiqbal standard. In homage to Dean Charles Campbell, who cold-called me on day one, I will continue refer to Twombly and Iqbal as Twiqbal.
Continue Reading First Party Property Insurance Affirmative Defenses in Federal Courts: What Standard Applies?

(Note: This guest blog is by Liberty Ritchie, a Licensed Legal Intern in our Oklahoma City office)

In Washington State, the Office of the Insurance Commissioner (OIC) exists to “oversee Washington’s insurance industry…protect consumers, and make sure companies and producers follow the rules.” One of the ways that the OIC does this is by investigating complaints against agents, agencies, and other insurance licensees. According to their website, the office answers questions and investigates complaints of over 100,000 consumers every year.
Continue Reading How to File a Complaint with the Office of the Insurance Commissioner in Washington State

This updates new California legislation in anticipation of another season of devastating wildfires. California is in drought once again. Summer has just begun and there has already been record-setting heat. Although California has been spared so far, wildfires are expected to continue to run rampant through California as it continues to heat up and dry out. The anticipated wildfires are expected to bring an influx of for out-of-state insurance adjusters into California to handle the insurance claim volume. It is safe to assume that out of state adjusters will not be up to speed with 2021 changes in California insurance law. As a policyholder advocate, you can add value to any claim by simply staying current on the rapidly changing California Insurance Code and applying it to your claim representation.
Continue Reading 2021 California Legislative Update: Senate Bill 872

The case found closest to the fact pattern above is Ironwood Building II. Ltd. v. Axis Surplus Insurance Company.1 Read further to find out who prevails in the end—the insured or the insurer.
Continue Reading In Texas, Who Prevails When There Is: 1 Damaged Property Caused By 2 Weather Events, And 2 Damage Claims Filed Under 2 Different Policies From 2 Different Carriers?

It is a myth that big-name insurance companies are leaving the California homeowners market due to wildfires. They have not, but they are selling their usual homeowners policies with a twist – exclusions for fire losses. Carriers can and will do this so long as the customer also gets a fire policy from the California Fair Plan – a quasi-public insurer of last resort that provides fire coverage if no one else will. Such a sale does not violate the California minimum-standards for fire insurance policies and allows carriers to stay in the game and collect premiums.
Continue Reading Negligence by Captive Agents Is on the Rise Because They Don’t Understand the California Fair Plan But Are Now Brokering Them By the Truckload