State Farm has apparently made a significant push in manpower and communications regarding the adjustment of claims in Louisiana and Texas. It takes thousands of adjusters and sufficient communications to get the job done promptly.  Delay caused State Farm’s old claims mantra under Frank Haines–"pay neither a penny more nor less"–has no place in the claims process, especially following a catastrophe. Good luck to the company with the "Good Neighbor" slogan. Many of my policyholder colleagues simply hate when I say anything nice about State Farm or any other insurance company. I appreciate that, especially if they feel that they have been wronged by insurance company adjusters or attorneys.


Continue Reading State Farm Gears Up For Ike

Wind versus flood. Insurance companies will use causation to deny claims just as they did in the hundreds of cases we litigated after Ivan and Katrina.  We will retain meteorologists and structural engineers as this issue  will be litigated in Texas and western Louisiana. Rimkus and Haag are located in Texas. I wonder how many outcome oriented reports they will issue this time around to support lowers claims payments by insurance companies.  I wonder whether the insurance industry has made a bonafide search for engineering firms that are not beholden to them and who will write reports that are in the customers’ best interests.  I am not holding my breath.


Continue Reading Hurricane Ike is going be similar to Ivan and Katrina

Just when the lights are turned back on, roads cleared and the messes cleaned up from Tropical Storm Fay and Hurricane Gustav, here come the next two platinum hits on the 2008 Storm Charts. Tropical Storm Hanna cannot seem to figure herself out.  She will likely move along the Carolinas and up the Atlantic Coastline. Hurricane

Tropical Storm Arthur starts off the 2008 hurricane season with some early inning excitement.  In my line of work, I am always asked during the summer months how many hurricanes there will be and where they will hit.  The newspapers are full of stories from meteorologic prognosticators regarding these events.  I simply reply it is a guess:  the odds are a major hurricane will form in the Gulf of Mexico and there may be an Atlantic Coast hurricane as well.  The truth is nobody knows. But the fact that nobody knows does not mean that you should not be vigilant, especially along the Gulf Coast areas in June and July. 


Continue Reading First Day of Hurricane Season and the First Named Storm is History

That’s the annual revenue of United Casualty parent, Unitrin, a company with a branded glass tower at One Wacker Drive in Chicago.  To put things in perspective, even if United Casualty had paid policy limits to our clients for damages caused to their homes by Hurricane Charley, it would have probably still been shy of

A year after the Florida Legislature and Governor Crist were duped by the insurance industry, legislation aimed at lowering the financial catastrophe of a major hurricane has been introduced to correct last year’s mistake.  See HB 983.  Last fall, I spoke with Alex Sink regarding her concern that the collapsing bond markets could make