Chip Merlin

Chip Merlin Since 1983, Chip Merlin has served as a plaintiff’s attorney with a focus on commercial & residential property insurance claim disputes and bad faith insurance litigation. Chip is a noted national authority on insurance bad faith, lecturing to national trade groups and publishing a number of papers and articles on the subject for organizations such as The American Association for Justice, The Florida Justice Association, The Windstorm Insurance Network, and Trial Magazine. As founder and president of Merlin Law Group, Chip has dedicated his practice to the representation and advocacy of insurance policyholders in disputes with insurance companies nationwide. Chip served as Chair for the Bad Faith Insurance Litigation Group and Secretary for the Fire and Property Insurance Litigation Group for the American Association for Justice (formerly known as the Association of Trial Lawyers of America). He was also Vice-Chair for the Subcommittee on Property Insurance Law for the American Bar Association.

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United Policyholders Warns Floridians About Bad Proposed Insurance Laws

Amy Bach is on the side of angels when it comes to fighting for policyholder rights. She is the Executive Director of United Policyholders which is the nation’s largest not for profit advocacy. She and her staff have spent considerable time in Florida educating the public and Florida lawmakers about insurance and sound public policy … Continue Reading

How to Stop Delay, Deny, Defend

Rutgers insurance law professor Jay Feinman wrote a book, Delay Deny Defend: Why Insurance Companies Don’t Pay Claims and What You Can Do About It, which exposed many insurance company unfair claims practices. In the last chapter of the book, he discussed how we can stop insurance claim wrongful delays and denials.… Continue Reading

Grand Opening of Merlin Law Group’s Oklahoma City Office

The South Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce gave Merlin Law Group a wonderful ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the Grand Opening of our new Oklahoma City Office. Drew Houghton, Larry Bache and I were thrilled by the outpouring of wishes for success. I am certain that insurance companies delaying, denying and underpaying Oklahoma claims are not … Continue Reading

Delays, Denials and Underpayments Occur When Insurance Companies Are Not Held Accountable—-What Are Florida Legislators Thinking?

Florida legislators have introduced legislation allowing insurance companies to delay, deny, and underpay Floridians’ insurance claims without accountability. National Flood insurance has no such good faith standards nor accountability and the above news story shows how Floridians can be expected to be treated if the Florida legislature passes anti-consumer laws eliminating protections that have been … Continue Reading

Reasonable Cost to Repair and More Thoughts from Win The Storm

The battles and debates about insurance restoration pricing and reasonable costs were hotly discussed at the Win The Storm Conference. Merlin Law Group set up a sofa next to our booth and more than two dozen contractors, public adjusters, attorneys, and construction suppliers had at least 15-minute conversations with me about pricing and other topics. … Continue Reading

Estimating a Reasonable Construction Price—Thoughts Following the Win The Storm Conference

The Win The Storm Conference was a very different and thought provoking conference because contractors and roofers involved in the insurance restoration and construction industry were the target attendees. Steve Badger, who was a speaker and observer for the insurance industry, mentioned that this was not a typical insurance conference because most of the attendees … Continue Reading

Restoration Contractors Providing Great Quality Workmanship Are Policyholder Friends But Many Insurance Companies Refuse To Pay For Quality

Contractors often tell me and other Merlin Law Group attorneys of the crazy excuses and refusals insurance adjusters give to avoid paying for required construction materials, processes, and practices which constitute quality workmanship. Cheap and non-quality construction is easy to do and often overlooked by policyholders completely unfamiliar with the detailed specifications demanded by manufacturers … Continue Reading

For The Policyholder! Merlin Law Group’s Kelly Kubiak Testifies Before The Florida Legislature

Insurance company lawyers and lobbyists are a crafty crew. Kelly Kubiak got word from me after I learned late Tuesday afternoon that Florida legislators needed to hear from her early Wednesday morning regarding a proposed law that would let delaying, denying and wrongful acting insurance companies obtain a “get out of free jail card” so … Continue Reading

Assignment of Benefits Contracts are the Hot Topic of Discussion and Legislation in Florida, North Dakota and Elsewhere

Merlin Law Group knowledge manager Ruck DeMinico sent me recent North Dakota legislation pertaining to Assignment of Benefit contacts. This topic was also hotly debated two weeks ago at the Windstorm Insurance Conference in Orlando. Insurance restoration contractors, their lobbyists and attorneys are desperately trying to prevent any changes that would make such contracts more … Continue Reading

Bill Berk and John Pappas Provide a Unique Perspective About Insurance Bad Faith Claims Handling and Claims Ethics Found Only at the Windstorm Insurance Conference

John Pappas is a tough litigator and very bright. I’ve known him since I helped him get his position at the 100 plus insurance coverage defense firm eventually known as Butler Pappas way back in 1982 when only a handful of attorneys worked there. Bill Berk was a tough prosecutor before he became a principal … Continue Reading

Partial Flood Proofs of Loss Requesting Only Items In Dispute Are Losers In Flood Claims

Flood insurance claims governed by the National Flood Insurance Program are different. The requirements to get paid are strict and must be complied with. Many inexperienced attorneys and public adjusters prepare these claims improperly and the result is that policyholders do not get paid or paid as much as they otherwise deserve. Federal proofs of … Continue Reading

Colorado Overhead and Profit Issues—Merlin Law Group Files a Response for Colorado Policyholders

The Colorado Department of Insurance has proposed eliminating one of its long-standing bulletins requiring insurance companies to pay contractor overhead and profit rather than deduct the amount until incurred. Such an elimination is obviously against policyholder interests and is the result of insurance industry lobbyists making inroads with Colorado insurance regulators who are supposed to … Continue Reading

Panama City Attorney Jeff Carter Joins Merlin Law Group to Help Hurricane Michael Policyholders

Panama City attorney Jeff Carter has joined Merlin Law Group in its Panama City office. While I lived in Panama City and attended Mosley High School, I have always found that it helps to have local attorneys with fine reputations in our firm who team up and use Merlin Law Group’s longstanding experience and dedication only … Continue Reading

Insurance Agent Versus Experienced Policyholder Attorney Viewpoints About Insurance Coverage Denials

Ed Eshoo works out of Merlin Law Group’s Chicago office and is one of the best property insurance policyholder coverage attorneys you could find. I do not think there is anybody with a national reputation as being “the expert” on the 165-line Standard Fire Insurance Policy on a national, rather than state, basis. Ed is an … Continue Reading
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