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Last Post 09/27/2013 11:44 AM by  ChuckDeaton
Poor quality report writing
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Leland
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09/13/2011 4:41 PM

    I just wanted to put in my two cents on how to write better reports. Please check these two examples:

     

    Example #1 (poor quality)

    When I decided to go in the back door the homeowner said we should look in the room on the left and we went in there. The homeowner calls that office and there was water on the wall which I thought was from the plumbing leak. But then we walked out through the living room and went outside through the front door and discovered that the water outside was from the planter box which is on the same wall where the water is on the inside. So then we walked back inside and looked at the wall and the homeowner then said that that area was wet for a long time.

     Example #2 (better quality)

    I inspected the property on June 12, 2011, together with the insured, Mr. Bob Bippo. An inspection of the left rear bedroom (the insured’s “office&rdquo revealed that the north wall was damp along it’s entire length, about 2’ up form the floor. This wall is common with an exterior planter. Mr. Bippo reports that he had previous water intrusion problems with the planter and hired Watersuckers Inc. in November 2009 to dry out the property. Mr. Bippo agreed to look for the invoice and fax it to my attention. Please refer to the attached sketch diagram and photos # 4, 8, and 12 for additional details of the wet area and planter.

     

    Example #1 is poor quality because it has a lot of useless info that nobody cares about. Who cares what you were thinking before you changed your mind or what doorway you walked through? Example #2 is better because it has some useful detail, like "who, what, when and where".

     

    Just my two cents, take it or leave it.

    Tags: On The Job
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    ChuckDeaton
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    09/13/2011 10:56 PM
    That is why you are an "Advanced Member", Leland!
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    CatAdjusterX
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    09/14/2011 10:19 PM
    Posted By Leland on 13 Sep 2011 04:41 PM

    I just wanted to put in my two cents on how to write better reports. Please check these two examples:

    <!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 <style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} </style>

    Example #1 (poor quality)

    When I decided to go in the back door the homeowner said we should look in the room on the left and we went in there. The homeowner calls that office and there was water on the wall which I thought was from the plumbing leak. But then we walked out through the living room and went outside through the front door and discovered that the water outside was from the planter box which is on the same wall where the water is on the inside. So then we walked back inside and looked at the wall and the homeowner then said that that area was wet for a long time.

     Example #2 (better quality)

    I inspected the property on June 12, 2011, together with the insured, Mr. Bob Bippo. An inspection of the left rear bedroom (the insured’s “office”) revealed that the north wall was damp along it’s entire length, about 2’ up form the floor. This wall is common with an exterior planter. Mr. Bippo reports that he had previous water intrusion problems with the planter and hired Watersuckers Inc. in November 2009 to dry out the property. Mr. Bippo agreed to look for the invoice and fax it to my attention. Please refer to the attached sketch diagram and photos # 4, 8, and 12 for additional details of the wet area and planter.

     

    Example #1 is poor quality because it has a lot of useless info that nobody cares about. Who cares what you were thinking before you changed your mind or what doorway you walked through? Example #2 is better because it has some useful detail, like "who, what, when and where".

     

    Just my two cents, take it ot leave it.

    ...............................................................................................................................................................

    Leland, Well said!!!

    I could NOT agree with you more.The writing skills of a large % of rookie adjusters on FOATA leaves alot to be desired. Not so much on CADO because a large % of members are in fact experienced adjusters and understand the importance of punctuation, caps and writing style. Simply put, what and how you write is a window into what kind of person you are. Bad sentence structure and no spell check shows someone who does not pay attention to detail.

    The examples of narratives you provided are spot on, the way it should be and the way it shouldn't be.

    When I see horrific writing, spelling whatever on my site I am very blunt with that person. I just recently had a blog post from a member who is an adjuster with whilst not a ton of experience, he had enough experience to know better than to post on a public site crappy writing, spelling and punctuation. I let this guy know as much and I also told him if I was the file examiner on any file he turned in and contained the same sloppy text, I am gonna bounce that file right back to him. He responded that I was basically a horses Ass(Maybe but not for that reason) and must have too much time on my hands if I was the examiner and nitpicked the narrative and kick it back. (Yes he is still a FOATA member)

    I am glad that you took a moment to point out your thoughts and I hope all adjusters new and experienced take your post to heart  



     

    "A good leader leads..... ..... but a great leader is followed !!" CatAdjusterX@gmail.com
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    cowboy26995
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    11/02/2011 2:58 PM
    Having spent over 37 years adjusting, managing and examining claims I am disheartened by the quality of reports that get submitted by so called experienced adjusters. The format is poor, the spelling lacking and the information rarely pertinent. Conveying the essence of a loss should be priority #1 followed by how the coverage of the issued policy applies to said loss. The report should be concise, informative, logical and timely. Correct grammatical syntax and spelling are a must. I have a report guideline that has served me well over the years that I'm willing to share. Drop me a line at adjuster@kingston.net
    Marc Dubois
    Executive General Adjuster
    M.G.D. Claim Services Inc.
    "Your Commercial Claims Solution"
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    ChuckDeaton
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    11/03/2011 9:37 PM
    If anyone is interested we will setup a Gmail account where sample reports can be submitted, edited and returned to the sender.

    We will comment on the specifics.

    This will be accomplished pro bono by a experienced working adjusters.

    Indicate interest thru this forum and a Gmail account will be provided.

    Compose and submit reports in Word format as an attachment to an email.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    ChuckDeaton
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    11/03/2011 9:39 PM
    If anyone is interested we will setup a Gmail account where sample reports can be submitted, edited and returned to the sender.

    We will comment on the specifics.

    This will be accomplished pro bono by a experienced working adjusters.

    Indicate interest thru this forum and a Gmail account will be provided.

    Compose and submit reports in Word format as an attachment to an email.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    HuskerCat
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    11/03/2011 10:40 PM

    The fault that lies behind the lacking reports often falls upon the lack of upfront information provided to the field adjuster.  I, for one as an independent inside examiner, take a proactive approach to give the field IA coverage information and instructions for particular types of losses that he/she may not be familiar with.  It makes life easier for me, the field IA, and the insured.  There is nothing worse than the blind leading the blind...but that can often be the case when certain types of coverage might be unfamiliar to you guys/gals in the field.  If you are an IA in the field, do NOT be afraid to call your carrier contact and ask questions.  That way we can get it right from the start...your phone doesn't ring, my phone doesn't ring, our boss's phones don't ring...make sense?   To quote our comrade Larry, follow that drill and it can be Happy Trails!

    But, do use spellcheck and if cutting & pasting...do check it 3-4 times as you will (and I mean you WILL) make a mistake because you are only reading what you meant to say and not what you really said. 

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    stormcrow
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    11/03/2011 11:30 PM
    I do not have a lot of time (long term assignment) but would be glad to review a few reports to help out. I know at lest one other disnasour who would likely help.
    I want to die peacefully in my sleep like my grandfather, not screaming in terror like his passengers.
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    Leland
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    11/04/2011 4:01 PM
    I think the foundation of a properly written report is the choice of captions, their order, and how the information is divided into the various captions.

    This is what works for me:

    1) Step one: gather data. ( inspect the property, prepare estimates, obtain expert reports, look up title info, call the insured and ask questions, call the file examiner when appropriate, get advice from others if needed) How can anybody write a report without gathering info first?

    2) Step 2: Open a word document with your guideline ("cheat sheet") which has the typical captions listed. (If the report is real simple and the adjuster can write or dictate the report from memory, this step can be skipped. But this step is critical if the report has a lot of detail or complex issues)

    Here are some sample captions:

    Reserve

    Risk: type of cons, size, age, condition, occupancy, pool, fenced, hazards...

    recap (of previous report)

    Coverage (limits, endorsements, rcv vs acv, policy period, sep scheduled, vmm premium) (on first report only)

    Other insurance

    Co-insurance (building/income)

    Date/cause of loss

    Initial contact

    Initial inspection

    Vacancy

    Recorded interview

    Remarks/Adjustments

    Police/fire/cause and origin reports

    Salvage

    Subrogation (under investigation, once xyz reviewed, will will comment further…)

    Payment recommendation/separate checks/ payees: contarctor/bank/PA?

    Expense payment

    Work to be completed

    Question(s) submitted

    3) Next step: decide which captions to add, and which to delete, at the same time making notes where to insert the information from step one. For example, if it is a commercial loss, it might make sense to have a caption for "Remarks - Coinsurance Building" and a separate caption for "Remarks - Coinsurance Business Income". I think deciding which captions to have is super important. Amazingly, some reports don't have "Remarks" at all, as if the adjuster can't make a conclusion or opinion about the loss.

    EXAMPLE: Let's say the claim was for a water loss due to a burst pipe and the carrier sent a leak detection plumber to give an opinion. Then in the "cheat sheet" above where it says "Police/fire/c/o reports" you would write "plumber" as a reminder to yourself to write something about the plumber report. You also might move this caption above the remarks, so the remarks section could discuss how the plumbers opinion affects coverage.

    This is where I see a lot of problems- a caption for the plumbers report should not discuss how his opinion results in coverage. In my opinion each caption should usually only contain information that precisely fits that caption. The plumber may determine cause, but he doesn't decide coverage. That's why the "Plumber's Report" caption ONLY DISCUSSES THE PLUMBERS FINDINGS AND DOES NOT MENTION IF HIS OPINION RESULTS IN COVERAGE.

    Now if you want to mix it all together in one paragraph, fine, go ahead. But then it should be just one Caption: "Remarks".

    Here's some examples of what I am talking about:

    Consider this poorly written example, which is how a lot of reports are written:

    PLUMBER'S REPORT

    As the company is aware the DP001 (02/08) policy expressly excludes "water leaks that occur over a period longer than seven days". At the company's direction ACME plumbing was tasked with preparing a leak detection report. ACME met with the named insured and his general contractor, Mr. Bill Smith. Acme plumbing has determined that the leak occurred over a long period of time and was not due to a sudden occurrence. The ACME report concludes "...based on our inspection and experience, the leak has occurred over a long period of time and is not a recent concurrence". As per a conversation with Bob Bippo of All American Insurance on Feb 3, 2001 this loss is not covered and the company will issue a denial letter.

    REMARKS

    The company will recall that the insured stated during the recorded interview (transcibed in our previous report) that he knew about the leak for at least one year. Please refer to the plumber's report, enclosure B, with photos taken by ACME. Acme discovered mold, rust, and rotting of the framing which indicate the leak is at least six months old. Please refer to ACME photographs nos. 4,9, and 13 in particular. ACME conducted an inspection of the loss location on Jan 1, 2001.

    The problem with this report example above is that the information is not placed in the appropriate caption. It needs to be divided up better so it will read better.

    SIMPLE REPORT WITH EVERYTHING STUCK INTO ONE CAPTION:

    REMARKS

    Please refer to the plumber's report, enclosure B. Acme plumbing has determined that the leak occurred over a long period of time and was not due to a sudden occurence. Acme discovered mold, rust, and rotting of the framing which indicate the leak is at least six months old. As per a conversation with Bob Bippo of All American Insurance this loss is not covered under the DP001 (02/08) policy form. It is our understanding the company will issue a denial letter.

    In the simple example above the plumber's report and the coverage decision are combined into one caption. That works OK, but it is not ideal.

    MORE DETAILED REPORT THAT IS ORGANIZED BETTER:

    PLUMBER'S REPORT

    At the company's direction ACME plumbing was tasked with preparing a leak detection report. Please refer to the plumber's report, enclosure B, with photos taken by ACME. ACME conducted an inspection of the loss location on Jan 1, 2001. ACME met with the named insured and his general contractor, Mr. Bill Smith. Acme plumbing has determined that the leak occurred over a long period of time and was not due to a sudden occurrence. Acme discovered mold, rust, and rotting of the framing which indicate the leak is at least six months old. Please refer to ACME photographs nos. 4,9, and 13 in particular. The ACME report concludes "...based on our inspection and experience, the leak has occurred over a long period of time and is not a recent concurrence".

    REMARKS

    As the company is aware the DP001 (02/08) policy expressly excludes "water leaks that occur over a period longer than seven days". The company will recall that the insured stated during the recorded interview (transcribed in our previous report) that he knew about the leak for at least one year. As per a conversation with Bob Bippo of All American Insurance on Feb 3, 2001 this loss is not covered and the company will issue a denial letter.

    in this "more detailed" example above the information regarding the plumber's report AND NOTHING ELSE is in the "Plumber's Report" caption. How the plumber's report fits into the coverage decision is placed in the "Remarks" caption. You may notice that it has the same sentences as the first example but it reads better because now the plumbers report DOESN"T MENTION COVERAGE AND THE "Remarks" caption DOESN"T MENTION THE MINUTIAE OF THE PLUMBER's REPORT.

    Each caption sticks to what should go inside it. The report is better organized and easier to read.

    I believe the key is to have organized thoughts and then write them down in an organized report.






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    Leland
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    11/04/2011 4:10 PM
    Just to clarify the DP001 (02/08) policy DOES NOT expressly exclude "water leaks that occur over a period longer than seven days"- it is generally excluded but not with that wording. I was just making an example.
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    ChuckDeaton
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    11/04/2011 5:23 PM
    @Stormcrow, we would welcome your input. There are others who are committed to helping and others that I intend to approach.

    Should we discover interest I will setup a Gmail account and publish it.
    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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    Roy Estes
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    11/04/2011 5:36 PM

    Many adjusters I have seen put information they THINK are regards to claim, when in fact they are not. I say Stay factual, state correct contact information regarding others involved with claim, be specific about damages, and I usually break out damages by room as is in my estimate.

    If more adjusters would think of the narrative report as a report used to SELL THE ESTIMATE AND DAMAGES to the reviewer I beleive there will be less kicked back. Unless of course you have a wormy file reviewer (of course I havenent ever seen one of those in 26 years)

    Its like too much information not good, not enough information not good. I have a really good template I use, unless I am working with an IA Firm, or carrier who has a specific report they use. They are all good, end expecially the ones used that are breif, specific and to the point.

    My 2 cents.

    "Each of us as human beings has a responsibility to reach out to help our brothers and sisters affected by disasters. One day it may be us or our loved ones needing someone to reach out and help." RC ESTES
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    HuskerCat
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    11/05/2011 1:16 AM

    Roy... that came through very LOUD and clear, just like Arthur Spooner's outdoor voice!! Glad to see you back on CADO and using the caps in your wild and crazy way! lol 

     

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    Leland
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    11/05/2011 4:19 AM
    SEE THE DRAMATIC DIFFERENCE WHEN A REPORT HAS CAPTIONS AND THE IDEAS ARE ORGANIZED. I took an actual sample report off the internet and modified it.

    Here is the text below from a sample report I found. (To see the whole report go to: http://www.iaiclaims.com/Downloads/...eport.pdf)

    Please compare the before and after version of the report. The second version is 95% identical to the original, except I made captions; moved the sentences around into their proper captions, and made a few punctuation and grammar changes.

    ========================================================================
    (original version without proper captioning)

    This loss involves approximately 50% of the total finished space of the insured day care center. Water from the broken
    water supply ran directly into the unfinished attic and the finished adjoining storage area. Water ran through the ceiling to
    the office, hallway, closets, classrooms, kitchen, cafeteria and front entry area below. The water inside the building is
    extensive. The insured called Chastain Chem Dry to do the water extraction, dehumidification and dry out of the building.
    The representative from Chastain Chem Dry said he has spoken directly to your office and explained that the dry out
    process is being done only after hours so the day care operation can continue uninterrupted. This seems to make the
    most sense as it allows for the mitigation of the business income loss. At the time we made our initial inspection we
    observed equipment being operated in the upstairs storage area, office, office hallway, main hallway closets and kitchen.
    We also observed equipment on site that was in temporary storage to be set up that evening after the day care had
    closed. All together there was over 30 pieces of equipment on site including fans, dehumidifiers and other air movers.
    We expect the dry out final costs to be well beyond what you might expect given not only the extent of the water involved
    but the increase in today days due the the process occurring only at night. Further there will be additional setup and
    handling costs to setup and dismantle the drying operation every day since 1-21-08.
    As of Monday 1-28-08 the dry out is subsiding with moisture remaining in the cafeteria and adjoining kitchen wall where
    most of the water was located. It is anticipated that the dry out will be completed today 1-29-08 or tomorrow. We do not
    yet have the final invoices from Chastain Chem Dry.
    We have prepared our estimate for structural repairs to include carpet replacement and sheet rock in the various areas.
    We have submitted our estimate to the insured for review and will seek his agreement as instructed in the original
    assignment cover sheet. This estimate is subject to revision pending the security system and additional carpet
    considerations once the dry out is complete. We having the insured contact his security system vendor to check out the
    intercom / security system as it has quit working due to being saturated We suggest a reserve for the repairs to the
    building at $8500.00. Contents at $1500.00 These reserves do not account for the dry out which could be over
    $15,000.00.
    We had hope to have this all together for your review before our 10 day reporting deadline however as the dry out is
    taking longer than we initially expected due to the reasons mentioned above we did not want to delay any longer
    completing our initial report.
    We are not enclosing photos again having previously emailed them for your file
    Our final estimate and vendor dry out invoices will be forthcoming.
    Again we appreciate this assignment.
    Sincerely Yours,

    =================================================================================
    (new version with captions)

    RESERVES

    We suggest a reserve for the repairs to the building at $8500.00, Contents at $1500.00. These reserves do not account for the dry out which could be over
    $15,000.00.

    CAUSE OF LOSS

    Water from a broken water supply ran directly into the unfinished attic and the finished adjoining storage area. Water ran through the ceiling to
    the office, hallway, closets, classrooms, kitchen, cafeteria and front entry area below.

    INITIAL INSPECTION

    At the time of inspection we observed damage to approximately 50% of the total finished space of the insured day care center. Water damage inside the building was extensive. At the time we made our initial inspection we observed equipment being operated in the upstairs storage area, office, office hallway, main hallway closets and kitchen. We also observed equipment on site that was in temporary storage to be set up that evening after the day care had
    closed. All together there were over 30 pieces of equipment on site including fans, dehumidifiers and other air movers.

    REMARKS- EMERGENCY SERVICES

    The insured called Chastain Chem Dry to do the water extraction, dehumidification and dry out of the building. The representative from Chastain Chem Dry said he has spoken directly to your office and explained that the dry out process is being done only after hours so the day care operation can continue uninterrupted. This seems to make the most sense as it allows for the mitigation of the business income loss. We expect the dry out final costs to be well beyond what you might expect given not only the extent of the water involved but the increase in today days due the the process occurring only at night. Further there will be additional setup and handling costs to setup and dismantle the drying operation every day since 1-21-08. As of Monday 1-28-08 the dry out is subsiding with moisture remaining in the cafeteria and adjoining kitchen wall where most of the water was located. It is anticipated that the dry out will be completed today 1-29-08 or tomorrow. We do not yet have the final invoices from Chastain Chem Dry as of the date of this report.

    REMARKS- BUILDING REPAIRS

    We have prepared our estimate for structural repairs to include carpet replacement and sheet rock in the various areas. We have submitted our estimate to the insured for review and will seek his agreement as instructed in the original assignment cover sheet. This estimate is subject to revision pending the security system and additional carpet considerations once the dry out is complete. We having the insured contact his security system vendor to check out the intercom / security system as it has quit working due to being saturated .

    PHOTOS

    We are not enclosing photos again having previously emailed them for your file.

    WORK TO BE COMPLETED

    Our final estimate and vendor dry out invoices will be forthcoming.

    We apologize for not completing our report before our 10 day reporting deadline however as the dry out is taking longer than we initially expected due to the reasons mentioned above we did not want to delay any longer completing our initial report.


    Again we appreciate this assignment.
    Sincerely Yours,

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    WHEN YOU SEE THE CAPTIONED VERSION REMEMBER IT IS ALMOST EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE FIRST VERSION EXCEPT NOW IT IS ORGANIZED! WHAT A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN READABILITY!

    This is what I am talking about, and I apologize if my previous post wasn't that well written- learning to write well is something I am always working on.....


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    Jud G.
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    11/07/2011 11:51 AM

    I think there needs to be a separate caption referring to COVERAGE.   After an adjuster identifies the Cause/Origin, my next question is what are the key coverage issues under the given policy you are working under?  After those issues are identified, then tell me how those pertinent clauses and/or limitations will affect or guide my repair recommendations and subsequent costs.


    The old GAB report format is antiquated in that it talks about coverage and coverage issues first before the cause and origin have even been elaborated upon.   The problem here is that your 'Origin' shown in the RE section of your report will reflect a single word, "Water".  As you attempt to discuss coverage issues, you hit a steep hill of explaining all of the potential endorsements, limitations, and clauses that could be triggered because of one deceptively simple cause, "Water".  By identifying the cause first, you eliminate wasted discussion.


    My ideal captioned property reports will reflect necessary captions that fit within the order of the old property claim mantra, 'Cause, Coverage, Cost'.   Even in today's world where 'estimate only' assignments' dominate the landscape, you can still insert a couple of sentences that identify the key coverage issues that affect the set-up of your estimate.

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    Leland
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    11/07/2011 3:46 PM
    I agree with Jud 100%. I did not include a "Coverage" caption in the example above because I chose to only make the captions that were needed for the information that was already there. I tried to improve the sample report without adding any missing info.

    I always include a coverage caption in my reports. And what Jud is saying is an important detail- besides mentioning the general details of the coverage, add a sentence or two regarding specific coverage issues that are related to the loss.

    EXAMPLE:

    Let's assume the coverage is on a DP 1 form and the fire loss includes a large collection of silver plates, bowls, and utensils. The detached garage has an upstairs apartment rented out to a non-family member.

    A good coverage caption (for this loss) might look like this:

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    COVERAGE

    Coverage is afforded to the insured under the DP0001 (07 98) policy form. The limit of liability for Dwelling is $245,000.00, and Personal Property, $80,000.00. The policy period runs from Jan 18, 2009 to Jan 18, 2010. This is an actual cash value policy with no building code upgrade coverage. The company will note that the policy form does not cover other structures "rented or held for rental..." . The company will also note that "silver other than silverware" is not covered.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The last two sentences are extra details of the coverage that are pertinent to this loss and not too many other situations.

    When the reader gets to the later part of your report where you mention that the garage damage has not been estimated or the forks are covered but the silver statues are not, he or she will know where you are coming from.

    Those two sentences could be inserted into the remarks caption but I think they work much better in the coverage caption. They also work like a warning to the reader about what is coming next.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If you notice, I did not mention under COVERAGE that the DP0001 automatically includes 10% of the dwelling coverage for the "other structure" detached garage. I didn't mention that because the file examiner probably already knows that because that issue comes up so often on that form. If I thought the reader was unfamiliar with that idea I might mention it.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------

    CONCLUSION

    Always use a coverage caption. Mention the big points: what lines of coverage exist, limits of liability, RCV vs ACV. Also add a mention of any obscure policy clauses that affect the particular claim at hand, so the reader doesn't have to look up the details himself.
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    HuskerCat
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    11/07/2011 10:51 PM

    Leland & Jud are correct......caption reports sell well, if done correctly.  And it has been the drill by many over the years to stress spelling, grammar, and punctuation.  While the following example leans toward the liability side instead of property, I think it illustrates how important report writing skills are.  This is an excerpt from a recorded statement summary on a sexual harassment case.

    As submitted by the adjuster:

    "He hadn't really intended as brushing by his co-worker to touch her but, she didn't seem to mind and they both laughed at least for the moment."

    As recorded:

    "He hadn't really intended as brushing by his co-worker to touch her, but she didn't seem to mind and they both laughed at least for the moment."

    Does anyone want to have to explain that one when you are on the stand?

     

     

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    CatAdjusterX
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    11/08/2011 6:33 PM
    Posted By Leland on 07 Nov 2011 03:46 PM
    I agree with Jud 100%. I did not include a "Coverage" caption in the example above because I chose to only make the captions that were needed for the information that was already there. I tried to improve the sample report without adding any missing info.

    I always include a coverage caption in my reports. And what Jud is saying is an important detail- besides mentioning the general details of the coverage, add a sentence or two regarding specific coverage issues that are related to the loss.

    EXAMPLE:

    Let's assume the coverage is on a DP 1 form and the fire loss includes a large collection of silver plates, bowls, and utensils. The detached garage has an upstairs apartment rented out to a non-family member.

    A good coverage caption (for this loss) might look like this:

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    COVERAGE

    Coverage is afforded to the insured under the DP0001 (07 98) policy form. The limit of liability for Dwelling is $245,000.00, and Personal Property, $80,000.00. The policy period runs from Jan 18, 2009 to Jan 18, 2010. This is an actual cash value policy with no building code upgrade coverage. The company will note that the policy form does not cover other structures "rented or held for rental..." . The company will also note that "silver other than silverware" is not covered.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The last two sentences are extra details of the coverage that are pertinent to this loss and not too many other situations.

    When the reader gets to the later part of your report where you mention that the garage damage has not been estimated or the forks are covered but the silver statues are not, he or she will know where you are coming from.

    Those two sentences could be inserted into the remarks caption but I think they work much better in the coverage caption. They also work like a warning to the reader about what is coming next.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If you notice, I did not mention under COVERAGE that the DP0001 automatically includes 10% of the dwelling coverage for the "other structure" detached garage. I didn't mention that because the file examiner probably already knows that because that issue comes up so often on that form. If I thought the reader was unfamiliar with that idea I might mention it.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------

    CONCLUSION

    Always use a coverage caption. Mention the big points: what lines of coverage exist, limits of liability, RCV vs ACV. Also add a mention of any obscure policy clauses that affect the particular claim at hand, so the reader doesn't have to look up the details himself.

    ......................................................................................................................................

    Leland as well as Jud, bravo!!

    Thank you for the comparison, the differences are obvious and I will tell you right now that I have wrote some weak reports and narratives and I have wrote some that were good and acceptable. I can also tell you that I have never wrote a narrative with the mindset of "selling" the estimate. I for the most part just dealt with the narrative as something to check off on the to do list.

    So I thank you again because that mindset is something that I should have done since day one.

    So Leland all you have to do is photocopy this, charge $799.99 and stick a bull$%^t cert on it and the new folk will fall over each other to get the latest cert. (that was humor by the way)

    In all seriousness Leland, would you allow me to either copy and paste this fine tutorial on my site or would you post it yourself. I have been making a concerted effort to make my folks aware that there is more to adjusting than XM8 fee schedules and IA firms or the latest cert or the newest disto. I want my members attention to expose them to the meat and potatoes of the insurance industry from policy and how to navigate through the docx to coverage issues like cause/origin, coverage issues, exclusions and industry grammar and to understand that you cannot write an effective estimate on how to bring the risk to a pre-loss condition if you have no idea what is behind those walls and ceilings and floor coverings,roofs etc...

    You could contact me at Robby@avcatservices.com

    Your piece would be a benefit for all of my newly licensed folks and would be most appreciated

    "A good leader leads..... ..... but a great leader is followed !!" CatAdjusterX@gmail.com
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    HuskerCat
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Posts:762


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    11/08/2011 8:20 PM

    With all due respect, Robby, and constructive criticism intended only...my post had nothing to do with "selling" the estimate. Rather, it was about selling the report itself as factual, orderly, and not open to misinterpretation.  Or am I interpreting your comment incorrectly? 

    What I had written (and not had wrote) was an observation of what a file examiner--or judge and jury, for that matter--might perceive regarding the accuracy of the entire claim file.

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    Leland
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Posts:741


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    11/08/2011 9:02 PM
    Robby, that is a nice compliment to me, and thanks, go ahead. I would just like to say that I am probably not the most qualified person to teach this subject, I am sure there are people lurking on this site who have better report writing skills than I do.

    I was looking for some sample reports to post today but they aren't that easy to find. I did find some roof inspection reports, structural engineering reports etc. Some of those reports have good ideas that adjusters could copy. If you have a report that you want to post, perhaps from a beginning adjuster, please do so. You can redact the personal info and someone on this board (not necessarily me!) can edit it.

    I work at a very traditional independent firm where report writing is emphasized. So I am blessed with a lot of practice. But I don't always enjoy it, and my reports are not always as good as I would like them to be. It takes a lot of concentration and time to organize the information.

    Regarding HuskerCat's comments: I agree, correctly transcribing a recorded statement is more difficult than it looks. As in your example, where does the punctuation go? Do you put in the humphs and the aahhs? I have done some interviews in Spanish, where the interviewee is using Spanglish words that don't exist in any dictionary. I have to invent my own spelling.

    Usually I just send the recording to the company and do the "key points", unless that want it transcribed.

    Here's an example of part of a report I did, with a "Recorded Statement" caption. The identifying details are removed and many of the facts changed:

    JULIE Q. INSURED
    file #112233-C
    October 2, 2009
    Page Two


    RISK

    The insured location is a single family, two story dwelling of wood frame construction with brick veneer exterior. The dwelling appears to be approximately 45 years old.


    COVERAGE

    Coverage is afforded to the insured under the Acme policy HO-1234567-8. The policy features a $1,000.00 deductible. We have not been provided with full coverage details as of the date of this report.


    OTHER INSURANCE

    The insured reports no other insurance or method of recovery.


    DATE / CAUSE OF LOSS

    On July 4, 2009, the insured location suffered damage due to a sudden slab leak in the hall bathroom.


    INITIAL CONTACT

    On August 29, 2009, the undersigned contacted the insured and made an appointment for the same day.


    INITIAL INSPECTION

    On August 29, 2009, the undersigned inspected the property together with the named insured, Ms. Julie Q. Insured.

    An inspection of the property revealed that a 1/2" copper plumbing line in the hall bathroom floor had recently been rerouted through a master bedroom closet wall, across the ceiling of the hall bath and back down another bedroom wall to connect with the bathroom sink. The undersigned also observed damage to drywall and baseboards in several other nearby rooms. At the time of our inspection the insured was presented with a Non-Waiver Agreement (Enclosure A) which she carefully read and signed. The insured also agreed to a recorded statement, the key points of which are transcribed below. Please refer to Enclosure C, adjuster’s sketch/diagram as well as Enclosure B, adjuster’s handwritten scope notes.


    REMARKS / ADJUSTMENT

    Please refer to Enclosure D, repair invoice from Super Plumbers, Inc. This invoice totals $3,244.00 and covers the scope of work to reroute the bathroom plumbing as described above. The insured also had dry out services performed by “Wet House Dry-Out”. At the time of the inspection the insured indicated that Wet House Dry-Out had sent her an invoice by email but she was unable to open the file. The insured indicated that she would forward same to our attention as soon as she was able to. If a direct repair had been performed the repairs would have included demolition of the marble tile floor, removal of baseboards, painting of the toe kick and baseboards, and removal and resetting of the toilet, as well as related clean up and disposal. The undersigned estimates that a direct repair as described would have cost approximately $8,400.00. The rerouting repair was less costly, but also necessitated additional damage to the drywall in the two bedroom closets. The undersigned will prepare a comparative estimate as well as a repair estimate for the damages actually made and comment further on this issue in our next report

    RECORDED INTERVIEW

    As mentioned above, Ms. Insured agreed to a recorded statement at the time of the inspection, the key points of which are noted below:

    • The insured has been with Acme for approximately 38 years.
    • Ms. Insured cannot remember the name of her prior insurance company.
    • The location of the damages are the master bedroom closet, her daughter’s bedroom and baseboards.
    • There is no other insurance on the property.
    • The damage was discovered when the insured walked in the hallway and noticed water on the floor.
    • The water was discovered Friday evening at 9:00.
    • The insured attempted to call her agent but was unsuccessful.
    • The insured then called an emergency service contractor.
    • The insured spoke to Acme Insurance the next day
    • The insured’s mother in law and daughter were present at the time of discovery.
    • The emergency service contractor is named “Wet House Dry-Out”.
    • Super Plumbing performed the plumbing repairs.
    • The plumber’s bill is approximately $3,200.00.
    • The insured does not have a copy of the emergency service bill.
    • There are no damaged contents.
    • There are no other parties to the loss.

    The original cassette recording of this interview is attached to this report as Enclosure E.


    PHOTOGRAPHS

    Attached as Enclosure F, please find photographs taken at the initial inspection. Each has been captioned for your convenience.


    SALVAGE

    Not applicable.


    SUBROGATION

    The insured reports no recent plumbing work. In the opinion of the undersigned, there is no subrogation potential.

    This completes our First Report. Please do not hesitate to contact the undersigned if you have any questions or comments.

    Please diary your file pending our next report.

    Very truly yours,



    Mr. Adjuster
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    This report is not perfect but it is an altered version of a real report, not something written to be perfect. The insurance carrier for this claim doesn't provide coverage information to the adjuster. They always want recorded statements on water leaks. I did the real version over 3 years ago, I could probably do it better today. I could have also done my estimate on the first report but it is not expected.



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