The Round-up: The Texas Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (“TAPIA”) has lassoed and corralled a great group of speakers and events that you absolutely will not want to miss this fall in Fort Worth. If you register by August 31st, members will only have to “pony-up” $149 and non-member, first timers $195. If you don’t have a bed roll or pup-tent to pitch, early registration is already open at Embassy Suites Downtown Fort Worth at 600 Commerce Street. You can save a nickel at Embassy Suites if you register by September 16th and mention “TAPIA” to get a TAPIA rate. Register either on line or call (817) 332-6900.
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The infamous “Hail Bill” will be celebrating its second birthday this September 1, 2019. Whether there will be any celebrations is another question. The “Hail Bill” – the Chapter 542A amendment to the Texas Insurance Code—covers first-party claims arising from “forces of nature.”1 Within that chapter, one notably section is 542A.006, which allows an insurer to elect to assume its agent’s civil liability for the agent’s conduct related to the handling of a claim. This section has been seeing a lot of litigation of late.
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The Problem: Waiving insurance policy deductibles (“you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”) has been common place in Texas since 1989 and came about as the result of a poorly worded statute passed that same year that contractors have basically ignored. Contractors who have broken the 1989 law by waving deductibles (primarily roofing contractors) are known as “deductible eaters.” Homeowners were lured into signing contracts with the deductible eaters based on promises, for example, of a “free roof.” And then, homeowners/policyholders were duped into committing insurance fraud when in submitting a request pursuant to their policy for replacement cost (RCV) hold-back, they failed to tell their insurance company that the deductible part of the claim had not been incurred. What this means, again for example, before the new law, is that the roof job a homeowner got where the $2000 deductible was waived or “forgiven” and buried in other ways in the contractor’s paperwork, will now be required as payment out-of-pocket and proof that it was paid before the insurer will pay the RCV hold-back.
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Introduction: Summer is upon us. Swimming pools will soon call like mythological Sirens. But whether you already have a home swimming pool, are planning to build an in-ground pool or are planning to purchase an above-ground pool for this summer’s fun in the sun, insurance coverage for personal injury liability and property damage should be considered. Check your policy.
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The Utah Insurance Department has one of the easiest and friendliest websites encountered. If you, as a policyholder, have a grievance against your insurance company and are thinking of calling to complain or actually filing a complaint, the Utah Insurance Department’s opening statement online will immediately put you at ease:
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Nearly a year ago, California became the first state to mandate that all new homes have solar power.1 The regulation becomes effective January 1, 2020. Under the new rules, individual homes must have rooftop solar panels or share a solar-power system with a group of homes. According to the New York Times, the California regulation is expected to add $8,000 to $12,000 to the cost of a new home.2 Predictions are that the solar power will save heating and cooling costs as much as $80.00 a month, not to mention a positive cut to greenhouse gas emissions. Before taxes, an installed rooftop solar energy system can cost anywhere between $15,000 and $25,000 depending on size of kilowatts. Only time will tell if the economic advantage of having solar panels will outweigh the upfront costs of installation.
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The phrase, it’s a brand-new ballgame, was popularized by Hall of Fame Dodgers’ Broadcaster, Vin Scully; when a team scores a run that brings the score up to a tie, announcers say: “It’s a brand-new ballgame.”

Texas Insurance Code Section 542A.006, effective December 1, 2017, allows insurers to accept liability for the acts of their adjusters either before suit is filed or after suit is filed. If the election of liability is made before suit is filed, the in-state defendant adjuster never becomes a party if suit is filed eventually. If the election is made after suit is filed, the court must dismiss the adjusters from the suit.
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A homeowner’s policy will, no doubt, help you sleep better at night. It’s a new year after all – everyone should read their insurance policy. But if you have not read your policy lately, or ever, then you may have a rude awaking when a sudden loss is not covered and leaves you financially devasted. Below are some of the more typical endorsements you may need or want.
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