Public adjusters represent you for a percentage of your claim settlements, typically 10%, which is paid upon the settlement any element of your claims. CPAC is paid from the proceeds of your settlement checks, which by New York State Insurance law and regulations (11NYCRR, Regulation 10, Section 25.12), at your request payments may be issued to public adjusters separately from your settlement payment utilizing several methods. Not all states are the same when it comes to compensation for public adjusters. For instance, many states allow a public adjuster to be named on your settlement check leaving you with the task of how to cash the payment.
SETTLEMENT HISTORY & CONTRACT COMPLIANCE
The average benefit to our clients range from 30 to 60% and in many cases much higher, but the real benefit in using our firm is the protection we give our clients by keeping them “Contract Compliant” with the highly complex policy terms and conditions, which if not timely followed can void a claim.
WHAT SETTLING A CLAIM INVOLVES
The amount of work including, but not limited to investigations, meetings, photography, estimating, documenting communications, legal insurance research, appraisals, mediations and coordinating emergency services are great reasons to hire a public adjuster.
YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR
Remember that you get what you pay for. Many public adjusters who cut their fee to close a sale usually make up for their lost income by servicing too many clients, which can jeopardize your claim. Annually, our firm receives an alarming number of phone calls from policyholders complaining that their public adjuster performed poorly in the settlement of their claims. A telltale sign of an incompetent public adjuster is one who doesn’t return phone calls. Approximately 80+% of the calls we receive are from policyholders who hired public adjusters with bargain basement prices. There’s is usually a price to pay for substandard compensation.
MAKING UP FOR LOW BALL FEES WITH SECRET SECONDARY INCOME
After years of policyholder complaints against unscrupulous public adjusters, many regulatory agencies across the United States outlawed several compensation methods, which created a secret secondary income stream for public adjusters who recommended construction and emergency service companies to unsuspecting policyholders for a kickback. As of 2013, it is unlawful in NYS for public adjusters to receive surreptitious kickbacks/compensation from restoration and construction firms they recommend to service your insurance loss without your knowledge and consent. Additionally, New York Law now prohibits a public adjuster from receiving vendor referral fees that exceed 12 1/2 percent of your total claim settlement.
To be clear, there is nothing wrong with your public adjuster recommending vendors to service your needs and or benefiting from their obligation to guarantee their vendor’s performance as long as the supplemental income is approved by you and does not exceed the lawful amount. The benefit of using a public adjuster’s vendor is that they will be taking their orders from your public adjuster, unlike insurance company recommended vendors who have the carrier’s interest in mind and are stringently controlled by your carrier.
PREFERRED INSURANCE COMPANY VENDORS
An insurance company vendor (A/K/A restoration firmS) knows who butters their bread and are aware that their services, (whether franchised or not) are subjected to termination for not following the carrier’s protocols even when those protocols sometimes violate industry safety standards (e.g. mold losses). The courts are filled with litigation resulting from bad industry services that injured consumers as a result of insurance carrier dictating restoration protocals. In a multibillion-dollar business, it’s only about keeping the money.
TELL THEM TO PUT IT IN WRITING
Similar to most industries, when it comes to selling something to consumers the wolves will be at your front door telling you whatever it takes to get your money. In this day of ultra-aggressive sales tactics, words mean absolutely nothing unless they are reduced to writing, signed by both parties with a hardcopy or Smartphone photograph in your possession. Even then, most business forms have to be read and modified to protect your rights as they are construed to protect the business owners and not the consumer / policyholder.
With all of the confusion after you suffer an insurance loss a reputable public adjuster should not be concerned with you (Smartphone) recording every promise they make and they should not object to immediately reducing all of their promises to writing. Best done via U.S. Mail, or by wire (facsimile a/k/a fax or email). You should never engage in verbally promised services until you get it in writing. It takes between 10 to 20 minutes to hand write and sign a ryder to a contract, which contents do not include verbal promises.
WE PUT IT IN WRITING
As a business practice, we supply our clients with a blow by blow protocol of events that will follow our retention, which will also include your responsibilities . If you do not understand our written requirements or our duties we will be pleased to further clarify any matter or answer any question in writing because we know that it would be impossible for our clients to understand the complexity of an insurance loss in a day, a month, or maybe even one year.
INSURANCE IS A COMPLEX INDUSTRY
The insurance industry is one of the most fluid, ever-changing and complecated industries to follow, especially when the object of the carrier is to protect their assets by minimizing their payouts. If you have any doubt, just break out your full insurance policy (not just the annual renewal forms) and try and decipher what your reading.
Most insurance forms are written by specialty companies similar to Insurance Services Office, Inc. (ISO)¹ who consult with professionals, including but not limited to; insurance attorneys, engineering firms and accountants when constructing and selling their policy forms to insurance carrier’s. Many policies are so complex in configuration that general family practice attorneys call public adjusters for opinions regarding industry norms and policy interpretations.
i: ISO, An organization that collects statistical data, promulgates rating information, develops standard policy forms, and files information with state regulators on behalf of insurance companies that purchase its services.