Bad Claims Adjusters

>> Thursday, September 15, 2011

Bad claims adjusters are a plague on all our houses.


Insurance adjusters are to be the front line of the insurance transaction - the part of the transaction that we all buy insurance for - claims service.


Here is a letter sent to the insurance information service, FC&S (National Underwriter Company):



"I am working on a complaint that involves whether the auto liability should pay for damages to a third party. The insured states that her adopted son, age fifteen and holding a driver's permit only, took the family car without permission and was involved in an accident. The adjuster is denying coverage, stating that the car was taken without the parents' permission. My feeling is that the child had access to the keys, which are the liability of the parents, so they should be liable for the damages that were caused. I would like to know what your thoughts are."

There is nothing, I repeat, NOTHING, in any auto policy I have ever seen that requires that a person have permission to drive a car in order for the insured to be covered for an accident.

This is basic stuff that any adjuster should know.

The auto insurance policy, like any other liability policy, protects the insured from lawsuit.  The fact that the car is taken (or stolen) does not impact coverage for the INSURED.

Think of the grief the insured is going through over this whole event, then they learn that some bone-headed adjuster is saying "no" to coverage.  

Stress times ten.

I hear regularly from insurance buyers who are fighting claims that should be clearly covered by a policy. Yet adjusters, by ignorance (let's assume its that and not bad faith) cause insureds lost time and often sleep.

Insurers, get rid of incompetent adjusters.  Adjusters, read the policies you are adjusting coverage for.  Read insurance books and study the business.

Obviously there are good adjusters out there.  We need more of you.  We also need you to step forward when you see bad actors in your midst.  Get them out of our business.

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Scott Simmonds fixes broken insurance, uncertain coverage, and painful premiums. He consults on, but never sells, insurance.

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