Tag Archives: Hurricane Michael

Are Insurance Company Adjusters Really Working Around the Clock and Making Accurate Estimates?

“Not with Hurricane Michael claims” is the answer to these questions being screamed by policyholders, contractors and public adjusters. The blog title and questions were plucked from CJW’s website which also says most adjusters have a difficult time making accurate estimates but CJW does not because their adjusters “work ‘round the clock” to make accurate … Continue Reading

Closed Claim File Statistics Following Hurricanes

Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable. —Mark Twain Closed claim file statistics reported by various departments of insurance following hurricanes seem absurd to those in the impacted areas and those working in the insurance claim business. The root of the problem is that most departments of insurance put pressure on insurance companies to … Continue Reading

Reflections on Superstorm Sandy Along the Jersey Shore Almost Seven Years After the Catastrophe

Larry Bathgate was my co-counsel on 23 municipal insurance claims Following Superstorm Sandy and countless commercial and residential claims as well. We spoke on Friday evening and Saturday morning about our former clients, the rebuilding of the Jersey Shore and our law practices. From my view, there has been an amazing transformation and it was … Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael Policyholders, Public Adjusters, Contractors, and Agents Warning About Some Policies With One Year Limitations To File Arbitration

Hurricane Michael policyholders, public adjusters, contractors and agents must check their policies to make certain that there is not a one-year deadline to start arbitration. The above photo is Lloyds at London. Lloyds is a place where surplus lines insurers do business and it is not an insurance company. Many of the Lloyds Underwriters have … Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael Claims Data Update: Part II

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation recently released updated data on July 26, 2019, from Hurricane Michael.1 A review of the available data shows the damage for the Florida panhandle. Since my prior blog post, the damage in the Florida panhandle from Michael has continued to grow. Over one hundred and forty-eight thousand claims have … Continue Reading

Wind Versus Water Causing Insurance Payment Delays? The Sad Song Remains The Same For Michael Victims as In Other Storms

The Tampa Bay Times ran an excellent story, Hurricane Michael Destroyed Their Homes Then The Insurance Heartache Began, which tells a sad but familiar theme about insurance company denials and delayed payments following hurricane losses. I was quoted in the piece: Chip Merlin, a Tampa insurance lawyer, said the same conflict happened in the last … Continue Reading

Substantial Damage, Substantial Structural Damage, Wind Damage, Flood Damage…. Damage Anyway!

Hurricane Michael has left a familiar mark on the Florida Panhandle. Much like Hurricanes Katrina and Ike, Hurricane Michael brought devasting winds followed by wind and flooding and more wind. Battered homes and businesses are assessed in the aftermath in an attempt to determine the extent and cause of damage resulting from the multiple perils … Continue Reading

Attorneys’ Fees and Costs for the Prevailing Insured

It has been almost eight months since Hurricane Michael devastated the eastern side of the Florida Panhandle. Not surprisingly, many residents and business owners are exhausted. Exhausted in the deepest sense—exhausted from waiting, exhausted from hoping, exhausted from failed promises made by their insurer, which benefited from premiums faithfully paid, only to find out that … Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael Victims Should Not Be Shaken Down By Unlicensed Contractors Selling AOB’s To Third-Party Crooks

A public adjuster alerted me to a Hurricane Michael policyholder being “shaken down” by a third party who allegedly purchased an AOB from an unlicensed contractor. What makes it worse is that the policyholder is being confronted by the third party and a person holding himself out to be an attorney.… 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

Cancellation of Property Insurance Policies in Florida after Hurricane Michael

After Hurricane Michael, on October 15, 2018, Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier issued an Emergency Order No. 234790-18-EO, that affected insurers writing insurance in the following counties affected by Hurricane Michael: Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Hamilton, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Suwannee, Taylor, Wakulla, and Washington Counties.… Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael Claims Data Update

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation recently released updated data from Hurricane Michael.1 A review of the available data shows the damage for the Florida panhandle. While we all know that Michael did substantial damage in the Florida panhandle the numbers have continued to grow. Over one hundred and twenty-five thousand hurricane claims have been … Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael Flood Proof of Loss Extension

Last month the Assistant Administrator for Insurance, Paul Huang, extended the deadline for submitting a Proof of Loss for flood insurance claims. The Standard Flood Insurance Policy (SFIP) provides that a proof of loss must be submitted within 60 days of the loss. However, FEMA Bulletin W-18026 waived the 60-day proof of loss deadline, extending … Continue Reading

Hurricane Michael May Trigger Civil Authority Coverage For Businesses In Florida Panhandle

As the Category 4 Hurricane Michael approached Florida, many areas evacuated in preparation for the storm. During a catastrophic event, such as Hurricane Michael, governmental authorities often order evacuation and prohibit access to certain areas due to public safety. The evacuation orders in Florida forced many businesses to shut down their operations until further notice. … Continue Reading

Adjusters and Insurance Companies Should Not Pressure Hurricane Florence Policyholders To Use Favored Contractors

Managed repair is the rage of many insurance companies. To reduce claims costs and better compete on low price, some insurance company adjusters use various techniques to steer or pressure policyholders into using contractors the insurance company wants the policyholder to hire. Independent restoration contractors and public adjusters have legions of stories about how adjusters … Continue Reading
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