Public Adjusters & SB-408–Blog Responses

I received many reply’s to my last blog regarding SB-408’s impact on public adjusters (Pop Some Bubbly?).  Most could not be published but, I did allow several that were critical of both my motives and manhood to appear, along with my responses. 

Some responded by praising both what was said and how I said it. Here’s one example:

I have to write and tell you, I love your blog. Your content is so captivating, interesting and makes me want to read to the end. So glad you included me in your launch email. And as for your latest piece, I’d love to pop some bubbly, but I think I’ll have to wait until after-hours. Take care.

Nonetheless, nestled in the frothing forest of negativity was one commentary that allowed a thoughtful and enlightening exchange.  Since it sheds accurate light on the issue, without acrimony and name calling, I thought I’d publish both the comment and my response in total.

Enjoy!

Scott,

I thank you for your post. While I greatly disagree with many of your positions, there are a few I and many other PA’s agree with. Most importantly I want to thank you for reminding me why I became a PA in the first place. As an independent adjuster I realize there was very little independence involved. I grew tired of examiners and/or claim managers stripping damage estimates not for mistakes but merely to keep claim payments low. I grew tired of hiring engineers who’s initial questions were, “what do you want me to say….” when they were given an assignment. So I became a PA and I can assure you it’s very fulfilling, not just because of the money as many would guess, but because of the satisfaction I get when helping my clients, the very homeowners who are buying the bubbly your drinking. While I see your point in your example of how the PA industry has grown, I would like to know how much the lobbyist industry has grown in that same time frame. PA’s level the playing field pure and simple and that’s what the insurance carriers don’t want. No longer can an examiner just line item veto a damage estimate and not be called on it. No longer can an examiner simply say you did not exceed the deductible or its not covered, or its limited. Homeowners in Florida pay a lot of money in premiums to be treated as second class citizens and while your disdain for public adjusters is evident, SB408 also hurts the homeowner and you should not take joy in that. They are a lot of PA’s with very similar backgrounds, why don’t you ask them why they became PA’s. I would be disappointed if they said they did it for the money.

In conclusion I can assure you I sleep a lot better these days.

Here’s my response:

Thanks for the considerate and thoughtful comments.

I understand and agree there is plenty of fault with industry claim practices. I also understand that, like yourself, there are many talented and caring public adjusters. In fact, I believe the profession, generally, to be an honorable one.

My concerns have been with legislative enactments that gave rise to an enormous proliferation of public adjusters to the point Florida had more than the next four or five states combined–and, along with that proliferation, some unsavory practices and individuals. I can tell by your tone and sincerity, you know what I’m talking about.

By virtue of these ill-advised past legislative enactments neither the public adjusting community nor policyholders have been well served. I dare say PA’s are suffering a bit of bad PR lately; deserved or not, and consumers are suffering the highest-ever rate increases and an insolvency crisis in tandem. The insurance consumer advocate just testified at a televised rate hearing that Castle Key (Allstate) should get a higher rate increase than the 30% it was requesting. And yet, we’ve had no storms. Again, I believe this is due to past legislation gone awry.

SB-408 goes a long way to repairing the damage done by those past enactments and the result will be less activity from public adjusters; but, that doesn’t mean the public is harmed, automatically. There will still be caring, hardworking PA’s such as yourself, a state Consumer Advocate a consumer helpline for the DFS and the most active plaintiff’s bar in America.

If someone actually pops some “bubbly” it will not be due to fewer good public adjusters, but…because there are fewer of those who arrived only to take advantage of poorly thought out legislative enactments.

They will depart. You and other like you will remain…

…and that’s what will allow all of us, including consumers, to sleep a lot better.

Again, thanks for your response.

Scott Johnson

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Comments

  1. Guillermo Cremati says:

    To Governor Rick Scott,

    I am a small business owner with 8 employees including myself and we are Public Adjusters that we all comply with DFS rules and regulations, CE’S , appointment fees and Bonds. Also we pay occupational licenses, fire marshall licenses, Alarm annual permits, etc… that we either pay the State,county, city or municipality. We have expenses like every other small business and nothing decreases in price or cost and with the SB408 you have restricted my industry from making a living and hurt the consumer which I am one of them. You said in your campaign you want to help the small business owners and homeowners but the signing of the SB408 only hurts us and the consumer when insurance companies under pay their policy holders and do not abide by the contract they have with the homeowners. I started in this industry to help the consumers as my wife and I are victims of the Insurance carriers. They under paid the claim and withheld depreceiation which I never recuperated and even as I have construction expierence I did my own work it still cost me more than what the carrier gave me. I have been told by other persons that the Insuarnce Lobbyists have told them that they where going after us this year 2011 after Governor Charlie Crist was not in office anymore to restrict or eliminate us completely. This has been there acomplishment thous far to restrict us and I hold heartedly believe that you as Governor have hurt the consumer by signing such Senate Bill and hurt the small business owners.

    Sincereley,

    Guillermo Cremati, P.A.

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