A hybrid witness is a fact witness who also happens to have the requisite knowledge, skill, or expertise to provide opinion testimony and whose opinion is formed as a result of the witness’ involvement in the subject events.1
Continue Reading The Best of Both Worlds! Join me on Friday at 2 for a Brief Presentation on Hybrid Expert Witnesses

The battle regarding insurance surrogates is being waged in Washington state. Many insurance companies want the Department of Insurance to allow unlicensed non-adjusters determine how much policyholders deserve to be paid. Here is the what the Washington Department of Insurance states is a legislative priority:
Continue Reading Insurance Surrogates and Insurers Delegating Those Duties Do Not Want Surrogates To Be held Accountable For Failing To Provide Honest and Good Faith Treatment In Washington

Governmental insurance pools or quasi-governmental entities offering insurance are often treated differently than typical private insurance companies. Since many of these insurance entities are set up to provide insurance to other governmental entities, especially municipalities and local school districts, it is important to recognize that state laws often treat these entities different than private insurers.
Continue Reading Municipal and Local Government Insurance Claims With Governmental Insurance Pools Are Different

Lesser & Company have been pioneers and leaders in Florida public adjusting since 1944. It is Florida’s oldest public adjusting firm. I was stunned to learn from Mark Boardman that Steve Lesser passed yesterday morning. I felt a lump in my throat and wished that this horrible news was simply not true. Steve is my age. It is hard to accept that my friends and I are getting so much older that the things that cause older people to die are happening to us. My visual memories of him are always with a sly and happy smile, knowing he had a significant, quiet thought that he might only share if asked for. He was wise and thoughtful. True to the private person he was, his illness was kept secret except to a few.
Continue Reading Steven Lesser- A Leader of Public Adjusters—Passes

In the legal world, there are generally two types of witnesses that you will see: (1) fact witnesses and (2) expert witnesses. Well, technically there are three, if you count hybrid witnesses. These types of witnesses serve both factual and expert purposes.
Continue Reading Are Public Adjusters, Restoration Contractors and Other On Scene Experts Hybrid Expert Witnesses? What Rules Apply To Them?

Dogs and cats harmoniously together? It happens at the Windstorm Insurance Conference where insurance company representatives and policyholder advocates analyze property insurance claims handling trends. Jonathan Held, Steve Badger, and I will present and analyze some of the most cutting-edge issues surrounding appraisals of property insurance disputes. This year’s Conference will be held virtually February 1-4. The live Conference will be held May 24-26.
Continue Reading Jon Held, Steve Badger, and Chip Merlin Discuss the Hottest Appraisal Trends and Controversies At The Windstorm Conference

Misrepresentations in an insurance policy application may provide a basis for an insurance company to deny an otherwise valid claim following a loss. In such circumstances, the insurance company argues that the insurance policy was null and void from its inception based on the misrepresentation because it would not have issued the policy or would not have issued it under the same terms if the representation had not been made.
Continue Reading Can My Insurance Company Deny My Claim After A Loss Based Upon A Misrepresentation in My Insurance Policy Application?

Some homeowners insurance policies contain endorsements or specific language which provide coverage for specific structures located away from the Residence Premises. The recent case of Jacquart v. State Auto Property & Casualty Insurance Company,1 analyzed whether a structure located 119 miles from the Residence Premises was covered under such an endorsement.
Continue Reading What is Covered Under Structures Away from the Residence Premises?

There are numerous articles about why our younger and brighter people in the United States do not want to be insurance company claims adjusters. Most start like this:

The insurance industry has a lot of open positions, and it’s scrambling to fill them. It’s targeting millennials, but many simply don’t consider insurance as a potential career — or think it’s boring. A recent survey from The Hartford showed that just 4 percent of millennials interviewed were interested in insurance is a career.1
Continue Reading Why Do Property Insurance Claims Handlers Do This Line of Work? Why You Should Switch To Public Adjusting and Help People – Today on Tuesday At 2 With Chip

David Altmaier is Florida’s Insurance Commissioner. On January 21, he becomes the President of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. He deserves a big shout-out because his career rise is truly amazing. He sets a great example of why students should pay special attention in math class, and I applaud him for starting his career as a teacher. Here is his biography listed on the NAIC website:
Continue Reading David Altmaier Starts 2021 With Growing Accomplishment