Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Jessica Altman

The last thing an insured should do with regards to a homeowners insurance claim is to sit back and wait for the insurance company to do the right thing. There are many ways in which an insured can combat a delaying, denying, and bad treating insurance company with the most obvious being retaining a public adjuster. However, another way an insured can push the insurance carrier is to file an Insurance Complaint with the State’s Department of Insurance.
Continue Reading How To File A Complaint With The Pennsylvania Department of Insurance About Your Delaying, Denying and Bad Treating Insurance Company

In a previous post, Insurance Company Acting in Bad Faith? Pennsylvania Protects Policyholders if Facts Are Plead, I discussed the importance of Pennsylvania’s insurance bad faith statute1 and how insurers routinely attempt to avoid litigating the substance of those bad faith claims by filing motions to dismiss alleging pleading deficiencies. Recently, the District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania rejected an insurance company’s argument that an insured could not make a bad faith claim because, although low, its damages estimate was reasonable because it was based on inspections of the property…its own self-serving inspections.
Continue Reading Can My Insurance Company Stop Me From Making A Bad Faith Claim By Merely Pointing To Its Own Inspections And Damages Estimate?

Policyholders need insurance laws which protect them if their insurance company delays, denies or wrongfully adjusts their claim. Attorneys have long recognized that insurance law is a specialized niche area of the law with strange nuances. Attorneys not dedicated to this field of law may fail to appreciate or may even miss small but important details when representing a client with Insurance problems. A case in Pennsylvania is a case in point.
Continue Reading Insurance Company Acting in Bad Faith? Pennsylvania Protects Policyholders if Facts Are Plead

Join Robert Trautmann and myself, on February 16, 2018, at 2:00 pm for a free one-hour webinar to discuss the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania’s recent decision in Rancosky v. Washington National Insurance Company,1 which upheld the current bad faith standards and specifically noted that an insured need not prove malicious intent to prevail

Sometimes when researching one issue, a case will pop up that isn’t what we were looking for, but nonetheless is worthy of note. While I was trying to help a public adjuster with some case law research the other day, I came across this gem out of Pennsylvania. Back in 1991 the Superior Court of Pennsylvania held that an insurer’s “policy provision which limited the insurer’s liability to actual case values of property unless replacement has been made was void as unconscionable.”1
Continue Reading Court Holds Actual Cash Value Policy Provision Unconscionable

In Pennsylvania, 42 Pa.C.S. § 8371 permits an insured to recover punitive damages, court costs, attorney’s fees and interest, on claims where an insurer has acted in bad faith. On September 28, 2017, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania issued a ruling1 upholding the current bad faith standards and specifically noting that an insured does not need to prove malicious intent in order to prevail.
Continue Reading Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Upholds Bad Faith Standards But Does Not Require a Showing of Malicious Intent

A recent class action lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania1 raised an issue that policyholder advocates and public adjusters see all over the country – insurers that try to exclude overhead and profit from property damage claim payments made on an actual cash value basis.
Continue Reading Are Insurers Required to Pay Overhead and Profit for Payments Made on Actual Cash Value Basis?

On November 22, 2016, Judge Berle M. Schiller from the District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania issued his Opinion and Order in Payne v. Allstate Insurance Company, granting summary judgment to Allstate and awarding them $25,000 in damages, after finding that the Plaintiff made material misrepresentations while securing the homeowners policy.
Continue Reading Allstate Voids Policy and is Awarded Damages Due to Policyholder Misrepresentations