Brian Goodman is the General Counsel for the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (NAPIA.) At the First Party Claims Conference, he and Steve Badger debated on a number of topics. One topic concerned the professionalism of public adjusters and the ease of obtaining a public adjusting license. Goodman and Badger agreed that public adjusters should call for increasing the standards for entry to become a public adjuster. I wholeheartedly agree.Continue Reading Public Adjusters Need To Raise The Bar For Admission If They Want To Be Seen As Professionals

Some states seem to be indicating that public adjusters act as fiduciaries for their policyholder clients. For example, Kentucky states that all adjusters “shall act in a fiduciary capacity on behalf of his or her principal.”1 Florida case law refers to public adjusters as a fiduciary.2 I made reference to the apparent fiduciary capacity being placed upon public adjusters at a recent public adjuster ethics presentation I made in California at the CAPIA Annual meeting. Many public adjusters might wonder—“What does it mean to act as a fiduciary?”Continue Reading Ethics For Public Adjusters—What Does Acting as a Fiduciary Mean?

Colorado Division of Insurance (DORA) Commissioner Michael Conway has issued a new request to homeowners insurance companies to extend Additional Living Expenses (ALE) benefits for those affected by the Marshall Fire on December 30, 2021. This request for further extensions of ALE coverage echoes the concerns raised in my blog post, The Clock Is Ticking: Understanding the Need for Extended ALE Coverage After the Colorado Marshall Fires. The November 2023 request comes as many policyholders are still rebuilding their homes and approaching the two-year anniversary of the fire, which marks the expiration of their current ALE benefits. Continue Reading Colorado Division of Insurance Issues Updated Request for Marshall Fire ALE Extension 

As we gather around our tables this Thanksgiving, adorned with the traditional spread of turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie, it’s a time to reflect on what we are truly grateful for. For many of us, this includes the roof over our heads and the safety and security our homes provide. In the spirit of this season, let’s take a moment to appreciate the role of property insurance in our lives and the importance of understanding and advocating for our rights as policyholders.Continue Reading A Thanksgiving Reflection for Policyholders

Consider a scenario where a structure, such as a brand new home, is completely destroyed by a fire just a day after the homeowner moves in. In this instance, the replacement cost, which undeniably encompasses the general contractor’s overhead and profit, should be a direct reflection of the actual cash value. This is because, as per the given example, there has been no depreciation to the property.Continue Reading Insurance Commissioners and Regulators Need to Protect Policyholders From Disappearing Actual Cash Value Benefits

Property loss prevention and associated laws are often perceived as modern endeavors designed to navigate the complexities of contemporary insurance risk management. However, these concepts are far from new. They are deeply rooted in American insurance history and have evolved to protect individuals and businesses from unforeseen losses. The essence of property loss prevention lies in the proactive measures taken to minimize risks and safeguard assets, a practice as old as property ownership itself.  Continue Reading Property Loss Prevention and Laws Are Not New Ideas But Necessary

Transparency is fundamental to fostering honesty in any industry, particularly in insurance, where trust is paramount. Advocating for fairer claims treatment raises a crucial question: why aren’t insurance companies required to disclose their claims files to their policyholders? If insurance adjusters are conducting their duties with integrity and in good faith, the sharing of these records should be standard practice. Such transparency would not only bolster trust between insurers and policyholders but also promote accountability. It would enable policyholders to have a clearer understanding of the claims process, strengthening the relationship and ensuring a more equitable and transparent claims resolution.Continue Reading Laws Should Allow Policyholders to See the Insurance Claims File 

There was no wind at the Sarasota Sailing Squadron yesterday morning. I was hoping for two more sailing races to improve my tied-for-6th place position when the race committee canceled any of those hopes. A couple of minutes later, attorney Jeff Carter texted me a photo from Panama City, Florida, of the St. Andrews Yacht Club ablaze. It burned down early Sunday morning. There is a piece of me that was lost in that fire. I am now left kicking myself for not doing something I tell everybody to do. Continue Reading St. Andrews Bay Yacht Club Burns Down—A Lesson For All 

The American Policyholder Association (APA) just issued a study, Justifiable Grievances: New Analysis of Regulatory Complaint Data Suggests High Rates of Litigation in Florida Homeowners Insurance Market are Driven by Substantial Claims Payment Issues, not Frivolous Lawsuits. The report has the following key findings:Continue Reading American Policyholder Association Publishes Study Highlighting Florida Insurance Market Claims Payment Issues