In a recent post, Policyholders May Benefit From All Their Coverages, I discussed the importance of carefully evaluating all the insurance benefits potentially available to policyholders if a catastrophic loss occurs. That blog examined the decision in Citizens Property Insurance Corp. v. Hamilton,1 which allowed recovery of benefits for a total loss due to flood and due to wind damage under both a flood and a separate specified-peril wind insurance policy.
Continue Reading Policy Exclusions Must Be Narrowly Applied to Assure Policyholders Receive All Benefits Available

Note: This guest blog is by Lewis O’Leary, who has served as both a forensic investigator and restoration contractor since Hurricane Camille (1969). He has a degree in the fields of Mechanical Engineering and Architecture, is the Chairman of the Education Committee for the Building Envelope Science Institute, and is a design/build, General Contractor licensed in North Carolina. Mr. O’Leary also serves as a staff consultant for engineering firms involved with wind damage from hurricanes and tornadoes. He can be contacted at 919-577-0907 or via e-mail at probuil@aol.com.

In researching the weather data for the June 14, 2017, hailstorm in the Midland/Odessa area, I shocked a veteran contractor who that works storm clean up by telling him that my research shows that wind typically causes more damage than hail.
Continue Reading Why Major Hail Storms Commonly Turn Out to be More Wind Than Hail

Note: This guest blog is by Lewis O’Leary, who has served as both a forensic investigator and restoration contractor since Hurricane Camille (1969). He has a degree in the fields of Mechanical Engineering and Architecture, is the Chairman of the Education Committee for the Building Envelope Science Institute, and is a design/build, General Contractor licensed in North Carolina. Mr. O’Leary also serves as a staff consultant for engineering firms involved with wind damage from hurricanes and tornadoes. He can be contacted at 919-577-0907 or via e-mail at probuil@aol.com.

On July 9, 2017, the News & Observer (N&O), a Raleigh, North Carolina based newspaper, published a front-page article entitled Nearly 200,000 homes in NC are at risk from tropical winds. The article explains that nearly all “manufactured” (aka mobile) homes will be torn to pieces if they are exposed to a “strong” hurricane.
Continue Reading Tropical Winds Cause Latent Damage at Much Lower Wind Speeds than Previously Thought

I met with a new Texas client this morning and we noted the type of problems many will face in Texas.  First, a spokesperson of Texas Windstorm Insurance Association indicated in a news article that it was going to take its time, and ensure that the Texas wind pool would not pay for anything caused by storm surge.  This reminds me of State Farm’s old claims culture: "we pay not a penny more nor a penny less" than what is owed.  The problem with that is delay and continuous underpayment since the culture pushed to make claims overpayment a sin through a false but good sounding motto.


Continue Reading Peace of Mind–Does Anybody Really Have It?

The article in today’s Tampa Tribune regarding a Federal Wind Insurance debate comes as no surprise.  Amazing how big Insurance is adopting Enterprise Risk Theory to further its interest.  Since large corporations in the insurance field are not so much interested in how they make money, just that they make as much as safely possible, it is no wonder they are making the case for Federal wind coverage.


Continue Reading Federal Property Insurance