Property Insurance News

11/21/2017 11:30 AM
NICB Reports Steep Drop In Metal Theft Claims
According to a report today from the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB)¸ in 2014¸ a total of 12¸630 metal theft claims were processed. That number dropped by 23 percent to 9¸699 in 2015 and dropped even more — 47 percent — in 2016 to 5¸103. Compared with 2014¸ insured metal thefts were down a whopping 60 percent in 2016. During this three-year period¸ 28¸040 insurance claims for the theft of copper¸ bronze¸ brass or aluminum were handled — 27¸450 of them (98 percent) involving copper. When copper theft claims frequency is compared to the monthly average price of copper¸ there is a statistically-significant correlation between the two.

11/21/2017 10:30 AM
Elderly Couple Arrested At Gunpoint After Insurance Agent Reports Them For Drugs
A Pennsylvania couple is suing the local police department and their insurer after being arrested at gunpoint¸ handcuffed and stuck in the back of a police cruiser for hours – all because their insurance agent couldn’t tell the difference between landscaping and pot farming. The roots of the arrest stretch back to September¸ when a tree fell on to the side of Edward and Audrey Cramer’s house¸ damaging both the home and an antique garden tractor. When the couple’s insurance agent¸ Jonathan Yeamans¸ came to their home to assess the damage¸ he saw flowering hibiscus plants in their backyard and allegedly mistook them for marijuana.

11/21/2017 09:45 AM
California Official: Wildfire Victims Have Two Years To Collect Insurance Money
The California insurance commissioner says that people who lost their homes in last month’s Northern California wildfires have up to 24 months to collect insurance payments. California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones issued the statement as a clarification. Jones said Monday that some out-of-state insurance adjusters brought in to help deal with high claim volume have wrongly told homeowners that they have only six- to 12 months to collect. The out-of-state adjusters also wrongly told homeowners that additional living-expense benefits would expire in 12 months¸ according to a report by the Associated Press.

11/20/2017 10:00 AM
Family Indicted For Insurance Fraud Involving Arson
Federal prosecutors shut down two local businesses¸ seize the property¸ and charged the owners with insurance fraud. According to court documents obtained by WVVA¸ Windel Lester¸ 66¸ his ex-wife Georgetta Lester¸ 41¸ sons James Lester¸ 47¸ and Gregory Lester¸ 40¸ were involved in a scheme to buy two homes and burn them down to collect insurance money totaling more than $556¸000. The Lester family owned Lester Home Center¸ Inc. and Lester Mobile Home Sales¸ Inc. out of Ikes Fork¸ Wyoming County.

11/17/2017 10:15 AM
People’s Trust Insurance Sues Dozens Of Its Own Policyholders In Claims Disputes
Suddenly¸ People’s Trust Insurance is suing dozens of its own policyholders. The Deerfield Beach-based insurer¸ opening a new front in the long-running war over third-party claims assignments¸ has filed more than 80 lawsuits against customers it accuses of failing to comply with the requirements of their policies. After suing policyholders in Broward and Miami-Dade counties just 12 times in the first half of 2017¸ People’s Trust has filed 67 such suits since July 1. The company has targeted policyholders in other parts of the state¸ including Orange¸ Hillsborough and Pinellas counties¸ but in much smaller numbers. “It’s very disconcerting. I’ve heard it’s increasing in frequency¸” said Paul Handerhan¸ spokesman for the insurance industry watchdog group Florida Association for Insurance Reform.

11/17/2017 07:30 AM
5-Alarm Fire Rips Through Pennsylvania Nursing Home
At least 20 people were injured in a massive fire that engulfed a senior living community in Pennsylvania. Firefighters received reports of a blaze at around 11 p.m. Thursday at Barclay Friends Senior Living Community in West Chester¸ about 35 miles west of Philadelphia. The fire quickly spread to multiple buildings and flames could be seen shooting from the roofs and windows of the structures. Residents were forced to evacuate outside in the cold¸ with aerial video footage showing dozens of people lined up along the street¸ wrapped in blankets. Many were in wheelchairs.

11/16/2017 12:30 PM
Massive Fire At South St. Louis Warehouse
A Botanical Heights neighborhood warehouse continues to burn Thursday morning. Shortly after 11:30 a.m.¸ Wednesday¸ firefighters reported a partial collapse of the Park Warehouse Service building in the 3900 block of Park Avenue¸ where at least 100 firefighters were working to extinguish a five-alarm fire that began more than an hour earlier. A fire department pumper truck was damaged when a portion of the building collapsed. No firefighters were inside the truck when the damaged occurred. The department said the truck was purchased in 2004 and cost about $750¸000 but is estimated to cost nearly $1 million to replace in 2017.

11/16/2017 09:15 AM
Legislators Pass National Flood Insurance Program Bill
A controversial flood insurance bill has been passed in the House as Republicans overcame bipartisan opposition. This legislation will both reauthorize and overhaul the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The program is currently facing considerable strain following a highly active hurricane season. NFIP was forced to pay billions of dollars to policyholders this year after several hurricanes made landfall in the United States. The House passed the flood insurance bill in a vote of 237 to 189. This achievement followed months of debates and deal-making. The main issue had to do with the degree to which NFIP would be scaled back.

11/15/2017 10:00 AM
Bill Aimed At Reducing Insurance Claims Abuses Advances In Florida House
Attorneys fees would be more difficult for “bad actor” water restoration companies and their attorneys to collect from insurance companies under a bill advanced Tuesday by the state House Judiciary Committee. The committee voted 13-5 to advance the bill to the full House despite concerns by some members that it would tilt the playing field too far in favor of insurance companies in disputes over how much should be paid to repair damaged properties. Similar to a bill that passed the full House last spring but wasn’t considered in the Senate¸ the new bill aims to remove incentives for water restoration companies and their attorneys to sue insurers.

11/15/2017 09:15 AM
$1M In Artwork Swiped During Manhattan Party
Who knew high society could stoop so low! A Manhattan socialite discovered someone had stolen $1 million in precious 16th-century art from his tony Fifth Avenue home after he held a swanky soiree there Friday. Alexis Gregory¸ 81¸ had 26 guests over to his pad at 907 Fifth Ave. Friday evening for a piano recital followed by an art exhibit. After everyone had left¸ at around 11:30 p.m.¸ housekeeper Luc Marina Rodriguez discovered that as many as eight golden figurines were missing from Gregory’s collection¸ according to law-enforcement sources.