Colorado appraisal law is certainly a hot topic. The law is in flux with appeals and challenges. And then, our firm attorneys got a bizarre email yesterday from an alleged reporter with Law Week Colorado:


I’m writing an article for Law Week Colorado and I’m looking to get some input and responses from employees of the Merlin Law Group. Specifically pertaining to the ethics involved in Appraisal/Umpire/Public Adjuster selection and the claim process; or as some have proposed the lack of ethics involved. All information will be confidential. If you are interested in providing specific information regarding tactics used by your firm which enforce sound ethics or to the contrary, please reach out to me. Setting up an encrypted email account at ProtonMail is easy and secure to maintain your confidentiality



To which I replied with no secrecy:

Whoever you are, all you have to do is go to our blog and you can read all kinds of articles about appraisal:

I have written and spoke on the topic in front of attorneys and Bar associations and in front of all kinds of audiences. There is nothing secret about it—Policyholders need to select really great appraisers who understand insurance, construction, who will work hard to learn all the facts, be honest so they do not give into pressures from the policyholder or the policyholder’s contractor and even from outside interests of other cases with the insurance company.

If you can write a better article, with more insight than me and learn more than I have in 35 years of this business, cheers to you!

Would you be so kind to tell us your name because when reporters go off the record about whom they are, there is not accountability and for all I know, you are a shill for the insurance company attorneys.

My optimistic hope is that you are a true legal reporter who is interested in this very important issue because Colorado is in a state in great legal flux about this issue.

In Colorado, a few insurance companies challenge every appraisal award they think is “too much” and have declared a war on their own customers by sending an army of lawyers with a blank check to get those awards overturned. Any good and hard-working appraiser working for a policyholder is challenged, sued, and threatened with legal action. Many just refuse to participate. It is not financially worth it to them.

Those insurers and their lawyers win because they have more money, and good appraisers cannot be found to take on cases. I have told our firm we should simply fight those insurers and lawyers in court and go to trial where we have a fair chance and forget appraisal in Colorado.

That is the truth—and nobody has to hide behind encrypted confidentiality to explain what is going on.

Here is a good post on the topic although the above link noted in the email to the alleged reported goes on for pages with articles:

An Afternoon Thought

People like to say that the conflict is between good and evil. The real conflict is between truth and lies.
—Don Miguel Ruiz