Public adjusters cannot practice law. Every state in the union has this restriction. Every public adjuster should read Merlin Law Group attorney Larry Bache’s 2014 post, The Big Don’t for Public Adjusters: Practicing Law Without a License. He noted:

[I]t is clear that a Texas licensed public adjuster is authorized to negotiate claims on behalf of policyholders on a contingent basis. However, a public adjuster should not argue existing case law or statutes and make clear to the policyholder that an attorney may be needed if a dispute over coverage manifests itself.

The most common example that I see is a public adjuster citing case law in letters to the carrier. Even worse, I have seen public adjusters disagreeing with an attorney’s application of a case in writing. This will get a public adjuster in trouble.
Continue Reading Public Adjusters Who Write Civil Remedy Notices Can Lose Their Licenses

Note: This guest post is by Brian S. Goodman. Brian is a partner at the Baltimore law firm of Goodman & Donohue, LLC. He is also General Counsel to NAPIA.

As a guest blogger for Chip Merlin, I am honored to write a bit about the history and purpose of the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (NAPIA), an organization for which I have served as General Counsel for over two decades.
Continue Reading The History of NAPIA and Its Importance to the Public Adjusting Profession

What do I do and think about while waiting for crazy path Hurricane turned Tropical Storm Eta to flood my home in Tampa? How about being in New Jersey where my public adjuster friends will be meeting next week with what appears to be a ‘can’t miss” educational seminar.
Continue Reading Public Adjusters in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania Must Attend the PPANJ Educational Meeting Next Wednesday, November 18

Americans hate to be told that we cannot do something. I think it is just in our DNA. Since the time we are little, we are taught to “never let somebody tell you that you cannot…..” Name the dream you want to accomplish because, in America, you can do it.
Continue Reading Adjusting and The Unauthorized Practice of Law—Thoughts About What Public Adjusters Can Do in Alabama

Brian Goodman is the very able General Counsel for the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters. He also worked tirelessly to get public adjusting licensed in Alabama. He has properly corrected me that public adjusting is not “illegal” in Alabama. Mark the time, I am making a correction to this morning’s blog.
Continue Reading Stop the Presses and Mark the Time—Chip Merlin, The Wizard of Something, May Be Wrong!!!

Friday at 2 With Chip is going to be interesting today. The Executive Director from FAPIA, Nancy Dominguez, sent me a State Farm policy that I have confirmed was the policy used in an appraisal in Florida. Here is the relevant language:

Appraisal. If you and we fail to agree on the amount of any loss under SECTION 1-PROPERTY COVERAGES, either party can demand that the amount of the loss be set by appraisal. A demand for appraisal must be in writing. You must comply with SECTION I – CONDITIONS, Your Duties After Loss before making a demand for appraisal. At least 10 days before demanding appraisal, the party seeking appraisal must provide the other party with written, itemized documentation of a specific dispute as to the amount of the loss, identifying separately each item being disputed.
Continue Reading New Requirements for Being a Property Insurance Appraiser—Are Insurers Going to Change Appraisal With New Policy Language?