(Note: This Guest Blog is by Javier Delgado, an attorney with Merlin Law Group in the Houston, Texas, office. This is the eighth in a series he and fellow attorney Tina Nicholson will be writing on Texas property insurance issues).

Often times, an insurance adjuster fails to properly investigate the damages to the insured risk and does not properly evaluate the obvious insurance exclusions for many reasons. After suffering a loss, the insured a business owner is making decisions to get the business up and running as soon as possible, and many of those decisions are based upon the representations of the adjuster, or the lack of information given by the adjuster. The business decisions of whether to move to new location, lease more of the building to offset the additional costs or debt, replace or repair the improvements and betterments installed by a tenant, hire security to protect the premises, purchase a new policy that will cover theft and vandalism on a vacant building thought to be insured under the existing policy, etc., have a significant impact on the amount of money the insured will pay out of pocket and may never recover under the policy.

Continue Reading Waiver and Estoppel – Insurance Companies Must Assert Their Applicable Exclusion or Limitation When the Insured Makes the Claim

A recent order from Galveston County regarding the TWIA litigation specifically names the TWIA representatives who will be deposed and the manner in which the depositions will take place. Suffice it to say that it is no easy challenge preparing for these depositions (see attached order). As members of the Plaintiff’s Ike committee, the members of our firm have read and catalogued thousands of TWIA documents, emails, correspondence and forms in preparation for these depositions. We are expecting more as the depositions start.

Continue Reading Preparation For TWIA Depositions Are Underway

Texas is where "the game" is being played regarding insurance coverage disputes in 2010. The Windstorm Insurance Network will hold its second Texas Insurance Symposium on May 11, 2010, in Dallas, Texas, where many of the issues related to windstorm coverage will be discussed. Certainly, the coverage issues raised by Hurricane Ike litigation will be highlighted.

Continue Reading Texas Windstorm Insurance Network Symposium Set May 11 in Dallas

(Note: This Guest Blog is by Javier Delgado, an attorney with Merlin Law Group in the Houston, Texas, office. This is the eighth in a series he and fellow attorney Tina Nicholson will be writing on Texas property insurance issues).

The ideal inspection process would have both the carrier’s adjuster and the public adjuster respect each others responsibilities and agree to jointly inspect and evaluate the damages resulting in a fair and equitable estimate documenting the damages resulting from a covered peril under the subject insurance policy, but many times this is not the case.

Continue Reading The Art of Adjusting First Party Property Losses – Part 3, Inspections and Re-inspections

Yesterday, Michelle Claverol and I had the honor and privilege to speak before a large crowd of public adjusters at the Florida Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (FAPIA) Winter Conference. As Michelle and I were preparing for the presentation, “Tales From the Dark Side,” it occurred to me…
Continue Reading The Art of Adjusting First Party Property Losses – What Public Adjusters Should Know About Their Adversary and the Real World Results of the Public Adjuster’s Claim Handling Decisions

In the last blog I posted regarding our litigation against Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) and the exchange of documents, Current Status of TWIA Discovery for Hurricane Ike Claims in Galveston County, I briefly explained the discovery process in a first party litigation case….
Continue Reading Depositions of TWIA’s Top Three Managers Scheduled to Last Weeks!

(Note: This Guest Blog is by Javier Delgado, an attorney with Merlin Law Group in the Houston, Texas, office. This is the first in a series he and fellow attorney Tina Nicholson will be writing on Texas property insurance issues).

“WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU CAN’T TELL ME EVERYTHING THAT YOU HAVE LEARNED ABOUT TWIA?”

No, this is not a typographical error. There are many things that we have learned about Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) and many things that we cannot openly discuss.

Continue Reading Current Status of TWIA Discovery for Hurricane Ike Claims in Galveston County

Houston Chronicle reporter, Purva Patel, filed an article, "They Want ‘Profits’ of Ike," noting that Hurricane Ike policyholders who have wrongfully been denied payments for expected costs of general contractor overhead and profit are bringing their actions in class action lawsuits. Our law firm has filed some of these cases with Javier Delgado taking the lead. Javier was noted in the article:

Continue Reading Overhead and Profit Ike Cases in Class Action Status and Gaining Media Attention

Back in April, an attorney in our Houston, Texas, office, Javier Delgado, wrote a post for this blog warning TWIA policyholders to be careful when choosing how to challenge a TWIA determination of damage to property (Don’t Be Fooled By Texas Windstorm Insurance Association’s Misleading Letter).

Continue Reading An Example of Why You Need to be Careful in Choosing How To Challenge TWIA

If you want to find a bunch of irate policyholders with plenty of stories to tell, hang out with Tina Nicholson and Javier Delgado in our Houston office. Commercial and residential policyholders have had enough frustration trying to do it themselves and are seeking legal counsel to fight the delays and denials from their insurance carriers. Anger at the insurance company and the adjusters working their claim is the prevalent emotion. Over the next several weeks, I plan to write much more on Texas property insurance law and protection it provides because Texas is the hottest new venue in the insurance litigation war. We are in the middle of it.

Continue Reading Protecting the Blown-Away Hurricane Dolly and Ike Policyholders: Discussions of Texas Hurricane Insurance Claims Practices