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Posted on Monday, January 21, 2002 - 10:29 pm:   

Ohhhh my
Don We Now Our Gay Apparell
Faaa Laaa Laaaa Laaaa Laaaa

and I just broke a nail
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, January 21, 2002 - 7:45 pm:   

I was NOT implying that you or anyone else in particular is a cross dresser. And they don't make 5" spike heels in my size. Something about a lack of market demand for Neanderthalic, Sasquatches.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Monday, January 21, 2002 - 5:05 pm:   

Who told you I was a cross dresser?
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, January 21, 2002 - 1:35 pm:   

Me too, Sarge Kyle, me too! I have and am working out of the house. For all of your reasons noted, they are a benefit to the company having a rent free office. If your working at night, that's working on your time. You never leave the work at the office because you never leave the office.

And, let's not forget the absolute worst thing about working from the house. Sexual harrassment is no fun when the only one you've got to chase around the office is yourself, even if you are a cross-dresser!
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Sunday, January 20, 2002 - 10:47 pm:   


You have to register at the new forum to get in.

As far as productivity, Most companies have found that workers that telecomute (work at home) are actually more productive. This can be for several reasons. Some employees find it a privalege to be able to work out of their homes and want to work hard so as not to lose that privalege. Some workers work better in the evenings or at night and actually get more done at home than they ever would in the office. No matter what the reason companies find that most telecomuters are happier and more satisfied with their jobs than those who are forced to come into the office everyday.

As someone who has worked from home and in an office, I can tell you that I will pick home over the office every time. There's no dress code, no boss sticking his head in the door, you can go to lunch whenever you want to, and when you eliminate the driving time to and from work you find that you have lots more free time.

Just some thoughts.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Sunday, January 20, 2002 - 7:12 pm:   

That's right, Gale, and it promotes disloyalty to the company. The company is getting free office space on the back of it's own employees. It also does nothing to promote productivity. If it's not the Jerry Springer hour, then it's the Oprah Hour that is lost by the company each day. And, what about that going to the store time, or get the kids at school time, name it time.

For the company, that free rent ain't so free in the trade off of the mice running free with no one looking over their shoulder.

By the way, regarding the new forum, will someone explain the procedure for getting into it? I've got a case of the stupids and can't figure out how to get in. I'm using my user name and Password but it ain't working.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Sunday, January 20, 2002 - 6:00 pm:   

Guys PC's can't handle CATS. They might visit 50 losses in one week but they can't repair that many a week. If they are seeing 50 per week they are just adjusting.

Many staff adjusters work out of a spare bedroom even in your larger carriers because it saves on office space and travel cost plus the adjusters like it.
Posted on Sunday, January 20, 2002 - 11:47 am:   

Sorry I missed this for a couple of days. Lets see now, PSP contractors. What a novel idea for an insurance carrier to downsize and reorg to the point of having staff work out of their homes and allowing VERY young people handle claims in a big office with a 27" monitor in front of them over the phone. Then just send out the PSP, have them fax back an estimate and pay it! Quite often sight unseen. I just informed 2 seperate PSP's this week their services were no longer needed as my supt. explained I couldn't "fire" them. MOOF is getting to be really interesting. I was told that USAA now has IA's in their home office in SA since they downsized and got a little leaner than they thought. I hope I am not sounding too sarcastic here. Ghoust, you are right on the $$$. Think I'll write another poem on this and see if Roy will allow me to post it. I will try and keep it in pentamic form this time Ghoust.
Posted on Saturday, January 19, 2002 - 9:06 am:   

Better plan to hang on to that day job for a longggggggggggggggg time. It's going to be a slow year without a hurricane and even then, maybe a month or two of work for the best adjusters.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Saturday, January 19, 2002 - 8:04 am:   

That's okay, let em pillage and plunder the treasure chest. The smart storm trooper has covered his assets by side stepping this abomination. We told them what would happen. Ain't it great when a prediction comes to pass?

That the carrier honchos don't care will be their downfall. Being 90 day wonders, they don't realize that the company auditors will howl to the board of directors over the spike in claim costs. The bragging of reduced claims expense will be shown to be hollow.

This whole concept of a 'leaner and meaner' efficient business machine has gone too far, in our typical American fashion. We have a tendency to go to extremes without knowing how to find that middle ground and STAY THERE. It's like with meat. The more fat left in meat makes it taste good but overloads our systems. To take away all the fat makes it tough and taste like leather. In fact, that is just what it is. The current business model is now that way, far too lean, tough and tasteless. Would you want to be one of the few overworked drones at a carrier these days?

As independent businessfolks, we must flex and adapt with the winds of change. Keep a claw in the tamborine and your beak in some other venture. Above all, survive until the need for our unique services arise again. With the storm pack ready, your other income keeps the money bucket from going dry.
Posted on Saturday, January 19, 2002 - 5:27 am:   

I'll say one thing for those contractors up in Montreal during the ice storm. At least the graft and payoffs were ABOVE the table.

Much nicer way of doing business don't you think?

And heck, they even let the adjusters get in on the game as well.
Posted on Saturday, January 19, 2002 - 1:43 am:   

If anyone is "really" interested in what "preferred contractors" are doing. Please email me. I have "so" many chapter and verses that you would get sick. As something that I had time to do, I documented each and every case of "overpaid" claims, "not damaged" claims, and "claims that were turned in because they had a 24 to 25 K estimate".AND, to top it off, the policy holder says "I did not even know I had damage until "YOUR" contractor came out. I did not call, he was just in the area. O:}}}}}}}}}}
But, I have documented and "bitched" to no end, and it falls on deaf ears.
Again, If you are interested, let me know.
I would even be open to some of the Preferred, etc. comapnies.
John Durham (Johnd)
Posted on Friday, January 18, 2002 - 6:52 pm:   

Removed by request.
Tom Toll (Tom)
Posted on Friday, January 18, 2002 - 6:30 pm:   

The preferred contractor network works fine until they get caught a time or three inflating estimates or discussing coverages with an insured. 99.9% of contractors do not have licensed adjusters on their staff, besides, they are not supposed to discuss coverages with the insured. They merely have been given an opportunity to submit an estimate of repair, document with photos, and then hope they can get a job. Most are not even paid for this, therefore the Companies are getting freebies.
Of recent, I have been getting some re-inspects with a request to run estimates. Of the last three that I have done, two were not valid hail claims, just puckered up and swollen shingles, yet the insured had already been paid for one and the other one was still waiting. I submitted photos and my opinion, backed up with facts, that the roofs did not sustain damage as a result of hail of sufficient size to warrant hail causation. Both had granular ERUPTIONS on the surface, not DEPRESSIONS. They also had age crazing and loss of granulation due to natural ageing.

The third one was a large tree falling on two appurtenant structures. My estimate to remove the very large tree and repair the buildings was 30% less than that of the contractor. I backed it up with an agreed with another contractor.

You know, if enough of this type of transgression occurs, maybe the companies will get back to reality. Sure, adjusters have to be paid, but the good ones, as a rule of thumb, allow reasonable amounts to repair the property. During Catastrophe events, there are not enough qualified people in the contractors element to submit large estimates, nor enough to do all the repair work.

Having celebrated my 41st year in this business this past January 7th, I have seen this come and go. Of course we are becoming a more sophisticated and technologically oriented society, so change may come slow. There are some excellent contractors available and there are some really bad ones, just like adjusters. I have always preached education and knowledge to be the forebearer of income. Learn as much as you can. If you are not busy working claims, start working the internet and books to learn more and more and more. You can never learn enough in this business.
John Durham (Johnd)
Posted on Friday, January 18, 2002 - 5:31 pm:   

I believe that is the collection of "approved vendors" that the insurance company does business with. Pay close attention now Doni because these are YOUR replacements. You see, the insurance company feels that they do not need you anymore because they can just go direct to the vendors (contractors) as this will only cost them about 4 times more than your adjusting fee billing. When they have enough hide peeled off their backs, they will be calling again. Just be patient.
Posted on Friday, January 18, 2002 - 1:33 am:   

Can someone please explain to me "vendor network"? I am trying to understand, being a newbee and all, but this one has me stumped.

Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, January 17, 2002 - 7:37 pm: think that in the good ol' days we used to concern ourselves with self righteous concepts such as the mere appearance of collusion with contractors. The management phrase was, 'Just whose side is the insurance company on, the customer, or the contractor?'

Is this a brave new world or what?
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Thursday, January 17, 2002 - 11:56 am:   

Alan, I think it will be much of the same; perhaps not all the same. The PV contractor field people can see more "units" per day than we can; they do not have to contend with coverage, nor concern themselves much with depreciation or other "insurance" issues.

They drop their pile of scope notes - done on template forms - off at their office, then Diane Data or Ernie Entry complete the estimate on their software - and off it goes; and the cycle continues.
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Thursday, January 17, 2002 - 11:38 am:   

Another carrier, Vesta Insurance Co. just went to approved vendor network. What is going to happen when a real storm hits? There is no way the contractors will be able to handle it.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Tuesday, January 15, 2002 - 6:26 am:   

Kleen you must be reading a little bitty small town rag.

My big city newspaper ads show lots of jobs which separate insurance from janitor positions:

International positions (sales, teaching, medical)
Internet design/graphics
Internet programmers
Internet sales
I.Q. testers
Irradiation technicians
Italian language teachers
Jack of all trade positions

Perhaps you're just much closer to being a janitor than some of the rest of us.
Mr Kleen
Posted on Monday, January 14, 2002 - 2:17 pm:   

Anyone ever notice that in the want ads the next job listing after insurance is janitor???

Just wondering....
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Sunday, January 13, 2002 - 7:16 pm:   

What is the next level in this business going to be?
Posted on Sunday, January 13, 2002 - 2:18 pm:   

glad to see the forum up and running again :)
Pat Marx
Posted on Sunday, January 13, 2002 - 11:52 am:   

This is a thank you to Roy for providing us with the venue to vent our thoughts and complaints about the occupation we chose to pursue,i do not know or have i met anyone that would put up with the asine remarks that have been directed at the site and personal attacts some people have directed at others who were very likely trying to help further the information provided on this site.Many of us cat adjusters have failed to show our appreciation to roy and staff for what they have provided.thanks Roy.
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Saturday, January 12, 2002 - 11:57 pm:   

Ghost you can learn to speak canuk with ease. First it's zed not zee and you have to change the way you say the word "out" Its eh not uh. Canuks ask for the washroom not the restroom, brown toast not wheat toast and wipe their food of their face with a serviette. Also 21 degrees is a warm pleasent day. Clayton has already explained that claims expences are treated correctly in the frozen north. Also a lesson can be learned from their legal system, sue and lose you can end up paying expences (I bet plantiff lawyers have learned how to disappear). Until recently the largest bad faith award was $15,000. (Clayton did your supreme court ever rule on that arson case?)
Injury cases have a general damages ceiling around 200,000$. And generals die with the plantiff. Could you imagine running a bad faith case if all the experts wanted their money up front. Also a friend from altera told me that the insurers there foten ask for a jury and plantiffs advoid them. If the legal system were better balanced it would be to our benefit. But like everything, this is a cycle and I believe catadjusters will be around for the forseable futur, although our role will change with the cycles.
Posted on Saturday, January 12, 2002 - 7:21 pm:   

Wow, Roy, I am glad the forum is back up. I was wondering if I was the only one without power, or sitting in the dark. O:)))
And Jim, As to me I thought your post about a writer was just a joke. If it makes you feel better. ha,ha.

Lets be safe out there and hope for some work.
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Saturday, January 12, 2002 - 1:37 pm:   


Sorry about that last post. I was really just making fun.

I guess that I have been just too serious lately and when I tried to be funny, everyone thought I was serious. I told you all that I wish I had a way with words like the Ghost.

I got a call asking if I was really P----d and really felt embarrassed that someone would have to ask, thinking that I really was.

No, I really love this job, claims, insurance, and YES adjusters.

Jim Lakes RPA (Registered Professional Adjuster) I hope.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Saturday, January 12, 2002 - 12:30 pm:   

Ghost, I can understand you not wanting to move to Canada, the Chili is inferior, the ribs are pork, and the dollars - well they come in funny colors and aren't worth much when you leave home. However, the beer is better, the fishing generally more abundant and edible, and most of us can heap scorn and ridicule on our silly sister Quebec; for its' very vocale minority interests who want to secede from our federation of provinces.

If I ever chose to wander and 'squat', 3of 5 of my favorite locales are south of the border. There is a little spot near West Glacier, Montana; that I know I could grow old peacefully at. Captiva Island, on the west side of Florida; would allow me to fish and golf until the 'big guy' above said it was time to move on. Finally, I could wander around New Mexico for a long time; I think it is one of your countries best kept secrets.

I think you speak 'our' language very well, again do not confuse your linguistic interpretations based on a 15 second news sound bit of 'Viva Quebec Libra'; that is an isolated pocket that doesn't represent 5% of our colloquial tongue flapping.

It is with humorous empathy that I think back to what your comrades went through during the Ice Storm of 1998, for those that worked Quebec claims; fortunately all my ice work was in Ontario where no such problems occured. But, it does remind me of work years before that I had in Laredo, and another year in the 'suburbs' of old Miami. I conclude it is those ventures that make life interesting and helps one appreciate wherever the choose to make home.

Well, here I am, guilty as charged - an off topic offender.

Ya'll have a great weekend, see, we say that up here to; mostly in the foothills of Alberta and the high grasslands of British Columbia.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Saturday, January 12, 2002 - 8:22 am:   

Clayton, the biggest problem you and I have is that you speak Canadien and I speak Texan. I think we just said the same thing.

The concept of all encompassing insurance has been percieved by the public has a "NEED" or a must have, has been promulgated by the carriers for decades. Pay your premium for cradle to grave coverage for anything that can possibly happen. It's this 'perception' that's the problem. The public says, 'I need my peace of mind!'. This has been ingrained in them by a myriad of advertising methods, all under the banner of expanded market penetration.

So the dawn of a new day finally arises. Turns out this psuedo-socialistic 'Good Hands', 'Good Neighbor', 'Put You Back Where You Belong' coverage is more than the industry can afford and more than the public can afford. Life is fraught with risk. Getting out of bed each morning is a risk. That assumption of a greater share of risk on the publics part has been long in coming, I think. This could also mean an evolvement away from the U.S. tort system to one more resembling the rest of the world. How does Mexico get along each day with so much less coverage and so fewer lawyers? Apparently, a whole lot cheaper. (No, I do not wish to move to Mexico, nor to Canada, I don't speak their language.) Ol' Joe Lunchbox will need to pay more attention to maintaining his house and driving techniques in this brave new world. It's more on his nickle now and less on the carriers.

So, Clayton, it's back to basics, huh? My oh my, the worm is turning.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 11:39 pm:   

That's a pretty rosy picture you painting there Mr. Carr. I sure hope it pans out that way. Just like the new economy business model was proven to be a bust (wow, a company actually has to make a profit somewhere other than on the sale of its own stock?) it sounds to me like the insurance industry has realized that it's important to make a profit on the primary business first.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 11:09 pm:   

And another thing Ghost ...., I had a few root beers with a group of insurer types after work today - both u/w and claims people - a good combination of solid 'grunts' and middle mgmt.

First though, with regards to 'need', flat out clear statement - the global economy would disintegrate and die quickly without an adequate supply and sufficient amount of insurance coverage. Just in basic terms of home mortgages or car loans, they would not happen without adequate insurance. In fact, it has been the lending institutions that have over the past 10 years pushed for expanded perils to cover their chattel risks. On the commercial side, commerce just wouldn't exist without the broad range of property or pure casualty covers.

However, back to the yak with the carrier people. All the ivory tower yatta yatta back in Nov / Dec was about a tightening market for 2002 .... lets try and get an overall 10% increase in all lines.... To skip to the point - by last week and affirmed this week, 20% increases are the norm for good renewing risks (<30% L/R), 30-40% increase for average accts (30-60% L/R), and 50+% increase for anything else if the u/w has any interest in retaining the acct. Apparently, there is little resistence by the smaller carriers - its' all in.

There is also a movement here to reduce coverage and increase deductibles, mostly achieved by offering renewal to 'average' risks of a named peril policy instead of A/R. This is widespread through to all casualty covers, where the 'frill endorsements' are no longer 'thrown in'; but charged for or not offered.

There seems to be a grassroots thirst for a return to an u/w profit this year - and I don't doubt there is quite a need for it.

The claims folks envision a bitter policy force. However, they have also received messages and mandates down from the ivory escalator, that there must be a return to adjusting and that processing be eliminated. Branch and field claim mgrs have interpreted that message to mean claims must be 'seen' more and have lowered the case reserve level that requires a field assignment.

The insurer cash register is going to fill up quickly, with the air around smelling of a 'return to basics'.

We couldn't build a fox hole by easter big enough for our mutual quad cheeks. So, what's the marketplace word, from your sightline?
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 6:23 pm:   

As is so often the case, we tend to wander from the topic of the discusion. The title of this thread "And the problem is" has one simple answer. Lack of weather. It's been 27 months since hurricane Irene followed Floyd up the east coast. 2000 wasn't much of a hail year. Last year the hail returned but if it wasn't for Allison stalling over the city of Houston for 36 or so hours and siphoning the gulf waters right on top of her, last year would have been a total bust too.

Maybe it's my lack of view from down hear at the bottom of the totem pole but I don't see anything that will get us out of this rut but the return of the weather. Reports say El Nino is coming back. There is the mold issue in Texas. Maybe some of you higher up the pole have a better view of the horizon than I do. But from where I'm sitting it isn't all doom and gloom. Climatology says that, as a rule, there will be bad weather in the US. We have some of the most severe weather in the world here because of our location. And you know what they say about location.

We work in a profesion that requires us to deal with people who are in the midst of trauma and great financial loss and sometimes even more tragic circumstances. I think we should keep in mind that when we are not dealing with other people's losses we should be a little more light hearted. Remember guys, it's always darkest before the dawn, this too shall pass, if it doesn't kill me it makes me stronger, sweat is just pain leaving the body, no, that is something else. Anyway, that's my mindless blather for the day. Spring is right around the corner.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 5:51 pm:   

Kile, you did not offend my sensibilities, which by the way are not that delicate; after 50 some years I am leather like - pliable but quite durable - I encourage my wife to pharaphrase my condition as 'cougar like'. I recognize what you are saying regarding your tongue stuck in your cheek, and recognized that before when you first clarified your remark - after I had stuck my head into it.

I do believe that throughout the free world, and certainly so throughout my travels in North America, that the land is pleasently blessed with 'smart asses'. I say that with no jest, it would be a somber society without people to lighten the air and make people laugh. If you are a 'punchline' type of guy that's great, and any informal wit presented in jest is not and was not the source of my concern; nor is that practice limited to your great state or the south.

Advice is always welcome, from you or anyone else, but I am not a dry 'unlightened' or unenlightened person.

I guess to best explain the nature of my concern is that if you, I, JF, or anyone else were sitting together somewhere, and JF came out with one of his personalized triads, then you quickly and razor like responded as you did, I would likely be the first to laugh and say; ".... 'you tell him Kile', don't let the big guy get on a roll or he'll have us singing hymns soon"

But, with just your short and what I recognized as sharp retort - in writing - without a buildup, I saw it as an inappropriate written remark, as opposed to your explanation. Slap my ass, and call me Judy; but I didn't see the humor in it.

No big deal, but I do apologize to you for taking exception to your comment; that I did not absorb long enough to recognize its' intent.

Hey, Mr. Lakes, is your urine problem due to my remarks, or your esteemed colleague? I'm surprised no one has started to vent regarding my tidbit of dropping the "CAT" from catadjuster, or was that just your first reaction to it?
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 2:50 pm:   

Clayton, allow me to first say I'm sorry for offending your delicate sensibilities. My comment about Jim's post was made with tongue planted firmly in cheek. Perhaps it is my upbringing in south Louisiana, a land well known for its propensity to produce smart asses, but I tend to look at life as nothing but a series of jokes and my mission here on earth is to find the punchlines. I realize that in places outside the south some of this informal wit can be considered disrespectful. May I humbly offer a small piece of advice. You may get a great deal more enjoyment out of life if you would just lighten up.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 9:04 am:   

And another thing...When I peer into my crystal ball I percieve that ,yes, the insurance world is being turned on it's head.

Could it be that insurance is less of a "NEED" and, in fact, more of an expensive luxery? Just how important is 'peace of mind'? Here in Texas, that peace of mind in the form of the all risk HOB has become a nightmare for the carriers and they are waking up with the cold sweats vowing, nevermore. The Insureds now will have less peace of mind with less coverage in the form an expanded 'named peril', HOA.

This translates into fewer covered losses for the claims department. This may well be the start of further reduced coverages extending into the casualty arena. Do we really need an insurance policy to make the sun rise tomorrow? In fact, no.

For too long, the anal orfices in the home offices have used premium dollars to float along on investments at the expense of the core responsibility of MAINTAINING an underwriting profit. By selling overcovered policies at cut rate prices, only to rely on the whims of investments, is the same as dancing blind folded in a mine field. BOOM! The enivitable has come to pass.

For us, we get to wait. Wait for the storm as we always do, when the laments from the Insureds and snarling from the insurance commissioners force the carriers to call us out again to save the day. Will there be fewer of us? Of course. Wars are not won by idiots, those still standing at the end are the winners. If that means crouching in a fox hole for awhile, we do. If you want to share mine, bring a shovel so we can both fit our wide rearends into it.
Russ Doe
Posted on Friday, January 11, 2002 - 8:35 am:   

I'm not done yet!! Until they pry my cold dead hands off my Disto,I'm fighting on!!!
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 6:26 pm:   

Jim, thanks for showing us the sensitive side side of your nature. I do indeed hear what you are saying, tho I will withhold judgement pending the outcome of the spring storm season.

As to our posted CADO image, what we say here is the very same things said by the carrier staff people and their field management. They are in the same boat with us whether they like it or not. It is the upper management with the reserved parking places and stock bonuses that are the destroyers of the claims departments. I have no problem with our image as expressed in these forums.

In the meantime, let us all keep our heads above water by any means available. Jim, as Methodists, we live on faith that will see us through lifes trials. These tribulations are just another in the series of trials of our character. I will say one thing, you sure do have a temper. And, it's an interesting one too.
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 4:16 pm:   


I guess I better be looking for a job.

Any carriers out there that needs an experienced "newbee" as a staff adjuster say in So. CA. or somewhere else.

Jim Lakes RPA (Really Pissed Adjuster)
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 1:29 pm:   

Kile, I took no personal offense at your comments.

My post was in fact long winded and perhaps rambling at times. The underlying message is what I hope is not lost on the reader.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 1:26 pm:   

When I read Jim's post today, it did have meaning to me. I wasn't going to comment on it, but them I come across a mindless blather by Kile. Even with his later supporting comment of it, there was no justification for the original comment; to me it reflects his lack of understanding of the 'big picture' and a sad return to his razor quick shots from his tongue attached to his hip.

Yes, Catadjusting "as we know it" is a "dying" profession. No, I do not sense it is truly "dead" yet. War over? Certainly not many battles have been won. Our "press releases" to the "world at large" via the CADO forums paint quite a silly and sad picture at times.

But, I can not concede defeat, and I certainly won't concede that the "idiots" won. Taking a look around though, the picture is not rosy. Yes, any Claims Manager viewing this site must ponder with bewilderment any "value added" purpose "we" would have, to any "need" they may have. Yes, the picture we create and let the world view is ugly. With my stated belief that "we" are each measured by the actions of the other, I do believe the former is an essential issue; I just don't know if it is the most essential.

Regarding your repeated refrain, ".... what is anyone on CADO doing about it'? I'll concede, likely nothing. I know I personally can not do anything, one person can not make a fundamental change come about. But I do believe, and have stated before, "we" as an evolved community - as a "group / organization / Co-op / association / whatever called" - could do something positive about "it"; and I have offered some ideas regarding the "it".

I've never expressed it before in writing, but basically it is the "Cat" in Catadjusting that has to go. "Stormtropping" is just one element of what I perceive our continued existence as. There is a core of talented and experienced professionals anong us and within CADO. That talent and experience, for the most part was likely nurtured in a claims environment; but it has created other skills which may be underutilized.

When I or "we" "love" something, i.e. the perceived "model" of "Catadjusting", to the extent that some of us profess, it is not right to sit back and watch it die. I see the exercise more as rehabilitation than a "cure", I see the result more as an "evolution" than a return to status quo.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:29 pm:   

Jim, it was a barb aimed more at the length of the post and less at the content.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:25 pm:   

Kile, while I have, do and will disagree with you from time to time, I really want to commend you for being man enough to use your real name when posting.

Using your real name instead of hiding underneath a rock of anonymity shows you have (brass) cojones as well as an opinion.

Thanks for sharing.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:13 pm:   

Wow, speaking of mindless blather....
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 11:51 am:   

Ghostbuster, let's you and I look at a few facts of life this morning.

Cat adjusting as we once knew it is a dying profession.

It is in fact a relic of the past.

Dead, just not buried yet.

Mark my words even if you don't like them or want to hear them (and don't say that Clayton Carr and I didn't try to warn you). Others can post here in disagreement until there are icicles in hell, as if anyone can do anything about it, but the truth is: they can't.

You can attack the messengers of the truth that lie ahead for cat adjusters and cat adjusting. You can try and drown out the message with blattering incessaant bull manure or repeated posts of ignorance and anonymity. Assassination will not kill nor diminish the veracity of the message.

The war is over Ghostbuster. The idiots won.

Everyone else lost. That includes CADO.

Sooner or later, when you open your eyes and come to your senses, you will pack up your bags and go back home. Not to be crowned as a deserving victor. But as a loser.

Heck it happens. Chit happens. That's life. C'est la vie! Asi es la vida.

The idiots won and we lost. Damn. Better luck next time.

Take a look around.
Open you eyes.
Accept the truth.
Stop fighting reality.

Let the cheerleaders talk about this or promise you that. Let them blame it all on the naysayers.

Watch while Nero fiddles and Rome burns.

Think about what a claims manager up in some ivory tower must think every time he reads the postings here on CADO. Does the image of cat adjusters that he sees here enhance his desire to utilize cat adjusters on his next storm event? Or does it more likely give rise to avoidance by way of utilization of staff and telephone adjusters and preferred contractors? Is the picture we are sending out here on CADO the one we really want the world to see? It may not matter to some, but to others it may well be the most essential vital question if they seek a continued future with cat adjusting.

The largest insurance catastrophe in world history comes along in the form of the World Trade Center, and exactly 5 independent catastophe adjusters are sent in to assist with claims handling. What does that tell you about how carriers perceive the image of cat adjusters?

(And other than mostly blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

Recent conversations as early as this morning, indicate that three of the largest vendors who handled the 1999 winter storm in Buffalo are not getting claims right now, because the carriers are utilizing their own staff adjusters, telephone adjusters and preferred contractors. What does that tell you about how carriers perceive the image of cat adjusters?

(And other than mostly blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

But in the brave new world of 2002, with far far fewer cat adjusters headed to Buffalo, the good news is the more and more unemployed can come onboard CADO more often for more blathering lunacy to entertain them, while our collective professional image continues to sink faster and deeper than the Titanic. Heck the best part of it is: by posting anonymously, they can exhibit their idiocy without anyone knowing. They can ruin the collective reputation and image of this profession and yet not get hurt one iota in the one place where it counts for most people: personally.

(And other than mostly blathering mindlessly or anonymously posting demands for some protected right to free speech (with guaranteed stupidity), what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

It's called the right of free speech Ghost. Sort of like the right to kill this profession I guess. I suppose when we are all free of any future for this dying dead profession, rights to free speech about cat adjusting will no longer be in vogue nor of value. Perhaps then and only then we can all agree on free speech in the most literal sense.

(And other than mostly blathering on mindlessly about their right to free speech (with guaranteed stupidity), what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

After Hurricane Andrew hit, what did the carriers do in Florida? That's right: they got out of the wind business.

After the Northridge Earthquake, what did the carriers do in California? That's right: either eliminated EQ insurance or priced it out of the marketplace.

Now reinsurers and carriers are invoking even stronger language exluding acts of terrorism from insurance policies and reinsurance agreements.

Mold will be next. (But please don't tell that to the kiddies down in Texas yet and spoil their little party). Anyone with an iota of intelligence realizes a company cannot pay out more in the long run than they take in. It may take a hard market or no market at all to pound that idea into the mind of the Texas Insurance Commissioner and the good citizens down there, but sooner or later they will learn. And my bet is when they do, it is going to be a very costly education. Painful one too.

(And other than mostly blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

Take a look at the loss of market value of the stock and capital markets in the U.S. and then program the gross losses of the past two years into the specific portfolios of specific carriers and see why loss ratios are now approaching as high as the 140% range. That is not only dangerous territory by even modest measurement, but again, for anyone with their eyes open, an omen of things to come.

(And other than mostly blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

The case that Clayton and a few of us have tried to make has been lost among the idiocy that is drowning out the real messages that should be heard here. The 'CADO cheerleading crowd' would blame the messengers for posting these truths because it is too negative. Or I suppose because they have neither a clue nor any answers.

(And other than mostly blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

Where are the voices of the real people who are real adjusters?

Or have all of you turned the future of cat adjusting and CADO over to the mindless balthering of a bunch of idiots who write and think on a good day at maybe the 5th grade level or from those gutless eunuchs who can only speak to us from underneath their dark rocks of anonymity?

(And other than blather mindlessly, what is anyone here on CADO doing about it?)

As I said in an earlier post Ghostbuster: I have seen the enemy and he is us.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 7:28 am:   

There was no offense intended, Jim, and none implied. As a fellow chicken-eating Methodist, did you know we have the better looking church ladies and casseroles? I know, this has nothing at all to do with adjusting.

I just think that in the real world, you might want to start abhoring stupidity and ignorance for a change.

Can we get an AMEN from the congregation?
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 4:27 am:   

When in trailer park think like white trash.
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 1:18 am:   

Happy New Year My Friends!
I was just contacted by a contractor buddy of mine that is getting charged $700 to learn how to use xactimate. Talk about un user friendly. have used dds and played with powerclaim and was able to punch something out without a lot of hassle. I have seen where xactware says they will not sell the whole program - welcome to having your foot nailed to the floor by them. I might add there was no input probably whatsoever by any cat adjusters regarding the software we use. This is just one problem we have by getting led to the slaughter with no representation.
As I read the posts that people put on this site, I find it funny that anyone would get wound up about what is said here. Having read the user agreement it sort of says "say it but use some common sense". Roy is right in the fact that he states we have a right to free speech. He is also the master of this garden and I commend him for allowing people the right to express their views on this site whether anonymously or by peoples alleged true names.
As for the contractors, pa's and roof salesmen on this site, it has given this site a sense of community, which keeps bringing people back to see what is up next.
Keep the posts coming - it makes it a more interesting site. :)
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:18 am:   

Papa Roy-san have no problem finding plenty of manure to make garden grow.

Growing weeds be another problem.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:14 am:   

Just wondering, is anybody working? The wolves are beginning to howel around the Anderson compound. If anyone has any leads for asignments, please email me. I have 3 years of experience and am waiting for TDI to mail my brand spanking knew Texas All Lines Adjuster license.
Roy Cupps (Roy)
Posted on Thursday, January 10, 2002 - 12:01 am:   

Whey, I’m going to the shed for the hoe. I may even grab a little manure to spread. I want the garden to produce nice red tomatoes, but………I need some help with the planting.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 11:26 pm:   


To answer your question (and then some):

(1) NO. I am not a diabetic. (In the REAL WORLD, what does this question have to do with anything??????)

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

(2) NO. I am not going through male menopause nor a mid-life crisis.

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

(3) YES. I am sane.

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

(4) YES. I am a practicing heterosexual, not withstanding the scurrilous personal attacks made against me because I have posted here on CADO well too frequently and obviously pissed off one idiot or another.

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

(5) YES. I do occasionally suffer from hemorrhoids, but only when I read one of the posts here on CADO from one of the 'CADO idiots'.

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

(6) Finally. While you didn't ask, I am also a practicing Methodist who goes to church every Sunday. (Even during storm assignments).

(Although in the real world I just happen to abhor ignorance and stupidity)

Next question?

Ghostbuster. By the way. Did I mention that in the real world I abhor ignorance and stupidity?
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 11:05 pm:   

As one who has reached that magic time of life called the male menopause, which is alot like puberty in reverse, I have noticed my mood swings create havoc with my patience and analytic perceptions, (not to mention the effect the daily pills and potions have on ones mental state).

I must respectfully ask you, Jim, are you a diabetic? I know when my blood sugar is off, there is naught but havoc in my little world.

Folks, it's like Jim Flynt has said, if you must storm troop, have at least one other way to keep some money coming in during the off times. It can be most anything; real estate developing, underwriting inspections, substitute teaching, or even driving the septic tank truck over to see trailer trash Barbie twice a month. (The things her kids flush is unbelievable!)

The point is, stay busy. Keep working and don't worry about tomorrow. You've got enough to worry about today. If you want to post here, organize your thoughts and present them in a manner that is interesting, non-threatening, and cognizant. Make fun of only yourself. No one ever got punched in the mouth for belittling themselves. But many have been for belittling others.

We thank you for your support. Now I'm gonna go test my blood sugar cause I'm getting antsy.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 10:57 pm:   

Confucius say: Gardener (CADO Webmaster) may have ripe tomatoes (experienced adjusters) and green tomatoes (Newbee adjusters) growing in garden (CADO pages). When gardener have rotten tomatoes (anonymous idiot posters), gardener throw rotten tomatoes away or gardener not continue to have green tomatoes or ripe tomatoes.

Confucius say: It's a tomato'er of fact.

Confucius never wrong (whey).
Roy Cupps (Roy)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 12:06 pm:   

Olderthendirt, Thanks for the comments. While I believe we are getting "off topic" I'm glad you brought up the "public" and "private" areas. In the past we have even provided areas that required Full Names but no one used them.
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 10:43 am:   

Jim, of you post less we all loose. Inspite of the half developed wits that sneak in here and try to disprupt stay with us. While you last post is very articuate, as before I disagee. We have a private area to use, but a public form must be public. the only change I would like to see, is to have peoples posting privledges suspended (for set periods of time) for personal attacks. Also while many of us wouldn't work for contractors or PAs some have chosen to do so. Roy keep up the good work,
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 7:41 am:   

Memo to Jim Lakes: Jim, there are none so blind as he who will not see.

Freedom of speech provides no guarantee of freedom from ignorance, illiteracy and sheer stupidity.

As you and I (and a few others) have discussed many times, for the life of me, I do not understand why you and I and the few other voices of reason and experience, even post, or argue by responding to some of the idiots who post here on CADO.

Jim, as a wise Muse once shared: "never argue with nor debate an idiot. The idiot has nothing to lose."

Take a look around here lately and ask yourself, where have so many of the earlier voices of professional adjusters who used to post here gone? Why did they leave? Why did they give up and quit? Let's just agree the 'war' is over and declare that the idiots won, while cat adjusting has lost.

I, for one, made a New Year's resolution to share less posts this year and also especially not to respond to posts from the yellowbelly chickenshick halfpast anonymous posters save and except for our learned scholarly friends 'Ghostbuster' and 'Wong Whey.'

Anonymous postings should be a thing of the past on CADO, and I have argued that position with Roy until I am blue in the face. Anonymous postings are an open invitation for personal scurillous attacks, misinformation, and an obvious reflection of irresponsible ignorance by the cowardly gutless 'wonders' who wouldn't even begin to know real adjusting from roofing. The few professional adjusters left here should boycott CADO with no further of their own personal posts until this disgraceful demeaning device is derided as a dinosaur of the past and then defused and denied as improper for a professional forum for adults.

Let the little children (anonymous posters) among us find another playpen and crib.

Jim, the ignorant postings here of far too many are doing nothing but deriding the reputation and destroying the professional image of the far too few truly professional adjusters left in this industry.

James, if NO ONE else here gives a continental damn about the professional image of cat adjusters, then why should we?

Let the CADO site now become the forum and voice for every public adjusting firm, mold remediation contractor, software vendor, preferred contractor, roofing company, and oh yes, the er, ah, handful of cat adjusters who are not yet aware of their impending and imminent extinction.

Or, as our friend Wong has said: "let the alligator mouths speak for the parakeet brains."

Cat adjusters are now getting (or not getting) what they all deserve. The handwriting is on the wall for the future of cat adjusting for those willing to wake up and open their eyes and accept the truth. For the others, the difference will not be discernible anyway; they can always go back to pumping gas, dressing hair, bagging groceries, and slopping hogs.

Jim, I have seen the enemy and he is us.

Adios mi Amigos.
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 5:45 am:   

I am going to jump in here and put a little light on the subject yall may not realize, or have but forgot. I have a list of at least 10 Restoration contrators, or Remediation contractors (I am working MOOF) that have on their staff former USAA and SF Adjusters, still licensed by the state, to write estimates that Carriers will accept because they, the contractors do not know how to! Some IA's are now employed in this capacity also. So Roy has to decipher the needs of our community weighed against a whole list of issues that border on freedom of speech or encompass it when these posts for "Adjusters" are made. I for one see no problem with the way he has handled it so far. IMHO
Roy Cupps (Roy)
Posted on Wednesday, January 09, 2002 - 1:43 am:   

GhostBuster I'm often torn between what is the best for our community. In providing an open platform I know from time to time that there may be information posted on this site that may not be in the best interest of our industry or our community members. I found out a long time ago that I could not police all the information posted on this site without stepping on a few rights and I'm not even sure I should try to do so. My fear is that we might lose some really good post that would be of some benefit to our fellow adjusters. However, I do rely on the members of our community such as yourself to provide information and feedback that will allow the visitors to this site to at least make an informed decision.

As you may know CADO provides the Classifieds, Resource Directory, Resume Hosting and other services for free.(I didn't want anyone to think that money was the reason for allowing such post.)
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Tuesday, January 08, 2002 - 11:19 pm:   

Jim that type of posting was something I learned from the other Jim. :)

I think the more things change the more they stay the same. Every now and then changes happen that really change things like say the car but for most part it seems change is slow and not noticed.

Most of the things we worry about turn out to be non-issues and it is the little things that we do not notice that winds up doing us in. As a kid I member the story of the guy running from a lion in the jungle and he makes it back safely to his hut and locks the door. He drops into his big chair with a sigh of relief to be safe from the lion only to die from the spider he sat down on.

There is coming a call for CAT adjusters and they will use up the smaller pool of seasoned adjusters and you will be training greenhorns just to keep up with the demands of the carriers. There just has not been enough major weather to insure everyone can show up and get 50 claims handed to him or her but weather will come.

A pure CAT adjuster is out of control of his future to a large extent. CAT adjusters are kind of like the big bears the kids and I watched on Nature last week catching salmon to fatten up for the winter. It was a small run of salmon resulting in a lot of fighting for the best fishing spots. :)

The weather will come, everyone will fatten up and before long CAT adjusters will be all fat and laying in the sun. The greenhorns will blow their money because they think the green stuff will keep coming forever where the seasoned CAT adjuster will put half of his income away or pay down or off the house.

Next week I will be out at NACA in Phoenix in case any of you are out that way. We have several CAT vendors using PowerClaim and have at their request set up a monthly rate structure but as you know there has not been any high CAT demand since we have hit our stride product wise.

Our market focus has moved to the carrier market because at least 1000 of them are still handwriting and some of them have 200 – 300 staff adjusters but most are in the 5 – 25 adjuster range. Actually the 1 – 40 adjuster firms make up a large group of our users since that has been our marketing focus until recently.

When we started developing PowerClaim in 1996 we had no idea what we were doing because we were and still are a software development firm. Since it was a CAT adjuster (my neighbor’s son) that got us into this fine mess we have looked to the IA’s and CAT adjusters to get us out of our predicament. I kid you not we had never heard of co-insurance, holdback, ACV, RC and on and on.

Actually it was NAIIA and NACA members that just did not give up on us that saved the day. Once you adjusters realized what we were doing on your behalf and the fact that I was one determined Kentucky plowboy backed up by a staff smarter than myself things started looking up.

Our turning point was NACA 1999 in New Orleans. Eric and I showed up down there with a very green PowerClaim 99. Several like Dave Hood took us to the side and let us know they were sure we had a shot at becoming a leader in the industry because although we did not realize it at the time that we were 70-80% on our way to having a contender in PowerClaim.

Jim on the jet back to Kentucky the decision was make to pull PowerClaim off of the market and made some of the changes in functionality that the CAT adjusters in New Orleans told us we should make. Since we knew we did not know what you needed we just took what you guys said as gospel. By late spring/early summer we were back on the market with a new version of PowerClaim 99 that really cooked at least compared to pre NACA version. By July we were seeing meaningful sales and good press in the trade so as you have read we owe a lot to the CAT adjusters.

That is why all of the adjusters that show up at NACA will get one free year of PowerClaim just like all did at the CADO convention last year. We have noticed the software firms that forget who made them successfully in the beginning sometimes do not stay that way to the end.

Life has been hard these last 6 years on top of the preexisting physical issues but I will have to say they have been the best six years after tuning out the aches and pains as well as the years of chest crushing financial stress. Our family, the twins arrived in late 1997 and by the Grace of God all four of us have survived through some trying times.

I think God for a wife that is a much stronger person than I, a great staff with Eric and Jason having been with me since 1995, being the first two guys I ever hired in my life and last but not least is the fine group of local investors that were all computer customers of our hardware business that we closed in the spring of 1999 to become a one product software firm.

No, PowerClaim is not everything it is going to become but by listening hard and working hard we now have been embraced by adjusters that have used all of the major packages. Some try PowerClaim and stick with they old vendor but I do not think we have had any user that started with PowerClaim that ever left PowerClaim by choice.

CADO input has been of great value over the past years and I would say has single handed done more to make the Open Standard become a reality literally around the world than any other influence. Thanks, Roy and all.
Posted on Tuesday, January 08, 2002 - 8:29 pm:   

Jim, I agree, but I held this post back. Apparently Gale did not have a good feel on the post nor any background.
I was wondering that if I sold a product used primarily by adjusters and their vendors, this would be one post that I would have let slip by.
An ole grandpaw from Tn said, don't spit where you eat!
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Tuesday, January 08, 2002 - 8:00 pm:   


Are you still selling Power Claim to Cat adjusters and vendors? If you are I guess I am a little confused as to where you are coming from.

I would like to think that you have the independent adjusters and vendors on your side, however, after reading some of you latest posts, I am either getting to old or feel like I am just getting senile.

I am not the smartest guy on the block but all my folks came from KY and I would like to think that I have a lot of common sense.

Please enlighten me, were you just pulling our legs or were you sincere with that last post?

Jim Lakes RPA
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Monday, January 07, 2002 - 8:45 am:   

What is the problem with the ad Ghost. Do not contractors and PA's read CADO? Did you not see the replies about the very valid CO-OP idea from those claiming to be CAT adjusters? If CAT adjusters are not really interested enough to get up off of their lilly white pads for their own self intestest why should Roy try to block other valid professions that do? If as some CAT adjusters have indicated it is true that CAT adjusting is a thing of the past when why not embrace those that can get the job done if CAT adjusters can no longer cut the mustard?
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Sunday, January 06, 2002 - 10:04 pm:   

And, the problem is...why is Paramount Constuction Co. of Palo Verdes, California running an employment ad here on CADO for a "Property Claims Adjuster"? This ad is for a contractor estimator or P.A. or a combination of both. Have you read their homepage? I've seen barracudas in my time but these guys push the envelope.

Roy, is this ad really okay with you?
Roy Cupps (Roy)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 3:37 pm:   

The CO-OP is not new concept. I remember at the CADO Convention in March of this year the word CO-OP was tossed around a couple of times. I think I spoke with at least 25 adjusters that at the time wanted to be a part of the CO-OP. At that time there was even talk of a vendor and adjuster coop. In other words the members of the coop would support each other.

Even before that Robert Steffan suggested a member owned IA cooperative, repost: "" You folks need to start a cooperative... Basically an organization owned by IAs to provide structure and branding to the indusrty. The organization would have operating expenses off the top and any profits are passed on to the members (thats you) based on their patronage (files handled) for carriers that utilize the organizations service. CADO could very easily adopt the co-op structure and obtain funding from the National Cooperative Bank. Alot of the ins. companies are actually a form of cooperatives themselves called Mutuals. Check out www.cooperative .org
Good Luck "" click here for the rest of the 12/30/00 discussion.

But as usual with time the interest faded away.

As always CADO supports any efforts that will benefit our industry.
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 2:40 pm:   

There will be a "On-Line" discussion, Sunday Night, Jan. 6,2002 in re: to Alan's Post.
Details of time and place to follow: Ideas and thoughts of success are invited to attend. Other neer'do'well's,skeptics,and one perils,and locked in to one vendor,never to work for any others, need not to input, as your thougths are for selfish reasons (maybe) but if one and all just try to push "a Cat adjuster" program for "us" then maybe, just maybe we can get something to work.
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 2:33 pm:   

Kudo's to Alan, the first post (or one of them) to be sanctioned and hoorayed by us. What an idea, I ran it by a Claims Manager at a large carrier and his thoughts were, why not, the adjusters that are a part of it are invested in to doing a great job due to the fact one screw-up could ruin it for all.
O.K., Alan, I nominate you for the legal terms and 1st on call out list due to this being your idea. No matter what others post, this is one of the best yet.(except for "me" owning a vending company with 6 contracts with multiple carriers, which may not ever come to be O:}}})
Happy New Year ! ! ! ! ! !
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 2:29 pm:   

Well, how do you spell revival?

Bear with me on a little math. If a schedule rate for "X" type / amount of claim is $300.00 - dependent on the 'vendor' split (60, 65, or 70%); we would receive ($180., 195., or $210.).

Portraying the undercutting that has been mentioned, if that same fee is reduced to $250.00 - that same cut of (60, 65, or 70%) would gross to us 'peeons' at ($150., 162.50, or $175.00)

So, if the "Co-op" scenario grew wings, 80 or 85% of a further cut fee to $225.00; would gross $180.00 or 191.25 - still better than the former example.

I am certainly not an advocate of the lowest price being the 'best product' to buy - far from it in most cases. However, it illustrates that there is a fair bit of leverage for a 'co-op' to garner work when an 80 or 85% cut is the slice du jour.

Keeping with the co-op 'society' scenario, does each 'co-op member' deposit $1000 as membership dues? Reality says money is needed in the 'pot' to allow the 'co-op board' to function and market.

I believe this 'society' still needs many, if not all, of the 'things' I have advocated for an 'association'.

Perhaps, someone's previous notion of 'adjuster classifications' has merit in this picture, in hand with professional standards.

Perhaps, those classifications should be tied to compensation. Whatever 'classifications' or words are used, maybe something along the lines of the following;
(1) "Newbee" - only assigned type "A" claims = rate of 75%
(2) "Intermediate adjuster" - only assigned type "A" or "B" claims = rate of 80%
(3) "Senior adjuster" - assigned "A,B, or C" claims = rate of 85%

Don't get itchy on the 'names' or 'types' of claims, but define or refine the idea / concept.

I assume any 'membership' in the co-op would not preclude the 'member' from accepting work in the open marketplace - outside of the co-op?

Jimmy Flynt, you do at times confuse me; but I say that with respect. What I have tried to push / shove or roll out as an alternative ('association') is most things a co-op is; but failed to use the word. I'm pleased this notion has inspired you, and I now look forward to the benefit of your input.

Come on people, 'pitter patter', we are burning daylight; as I have said "cat adjusting as we know it will be dead in two years"; and our CADO community should evolve.

Maybe someone should start a new thread, to capture the comments.

Oh, and thanks Alan, for using the 'words' that have seem to have triggered a new life to an old story.
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 1:00 pm:   

Co-0p, union, association, band of gypsys. None of it will work until the carriers can be assured that their headache (claims to be processed) can be processed for a lower fee overall. There is no reason for them to blink because they can just make a call to some of the slug "vendors" that have pounded down the fee schedules.
It will take a smart guy to build a web based platform for claim deployment as well as estimating to make it more attractive to the companies to use independents.
I remember the first time I saw a Xactimate, I thought it was the coolest thing. Little did I know that the software would get more expensive, the claim process more involved. Fee schedules stay the same.
I think the person in this business that can figure out a way to tie the web around this business will be the one left standing. They will have to share it with the companies though, and pass some of the savings on. Right now we will move from carrier to carrier hoping for a change, but until we put ourselves behind a better business plan, we are going to keep getting chiseled down.
As for the 85-15 split outfit getting ready to pop up, why use them if the same $ is being spent?
Whats the upside? None I can see. They will go and market and be told company x says they can do it for this can you match it? Reluctantly they will have to say yes to stay in business. A bunch of us will go behind it hoping it will get better. We are like a bunch of lab rats that are part of a big insurance company experiment. "how much pain can they endure"?

We need a better moustrap :)
Russ Doe
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 12:00 pm:   

I think Alan is on the right track!! I wish ALL in our Industry a very prosperous & Safe New Year.
Please get well soon Claude.Russ
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 11:58 am:   

Alan and Gale, NOW you're talking.

I have been advocating this same concept privately more or less for years, as the best, if not only way for cat adjusters to control their own destiny as well as maximize their income.

Count me in on this idea. It WILL work.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 10:46 am:   

Alan that is also the way my telephone company is set up and is the principal the Mutual carriers are based on. With the farm co-op it does not eliminate other vendors in the same business. Basically the mutual/co-op concept is of interest to those that feel they are not getting the best deal in town in some way or just need the services that otherwise would not exist. There is one firm today that is doing something similar or planning to what you are talking about and I think they are talking a 15/85 split. They will sell the carriers and assign the claims and return the claims to the carrier all paperless. Again this concept is for daily claims but could be applied to CAT situations I am sure.

It might be hard to market and operate a CAT co-op on 20%. The board would need to get some serious upfront money from the membership or be able to borrow the money. Like for the telephone and ag businesses I think there were government programs providing the start up loans.

Sounds like a lot of hard work but then lazy people usually are not interested in changing their lot in life to the extent that they will act because talking about it meets their needs because they always come up too many reasons why it can’t be done to ever get started.
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 9:45 am:   

How is this for a solution?
Adjuster Co-Op.
The Co-Op would solicit business, screen adjusters and act as a clearing house. Adjusters would be paid 80% of billing and the Co-OP would retain 20% for expenses, staff and marketing. Any extra monies would be refunded to the Co-Op members on a yearly basis.

With a 80% payout, the Co-OP could underbid most other vendors and the adjuster could still make more money. This is just a thought. This would also constitute a group for Major Medical Benefits, IRA etc.. Co-Op would have a Board of Directors who be voted on every year. Farmers do this all the time to get the best price for their crops.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Sunday, December 30, 2001 - 10:17 am:   

Bare Facts

Two hunters came upon a hungry bear in woods who began chasing them. As the starving bear got closer, one hunter turned to other and said "we'll never out run this bear."

The other hunter responded "I know, I don't have to.....I only have to out run you."

Moral of story is smarter faster adjusters will always out run slower adjusters who the bears in life will chase and eat daily.

That's life. That's survival of the fittest.

When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. That's called being a SURVIVOR. It works for those who believe.
Posted on Sunday, December 30, 2001 - 9:52 am:   

All IAs are, in a sense, Independent Business Persons.

As we all know, some are more successful than others. That's the real world.

All the professional designations in the world won't help, if you do not take pride in your product and produce one that will make the Carrier request your services.

Let's face it. There are a lot of folks out that that are educated above their intelligence.

Do you know what they call the person that graduated last in their class at medical school?


I am not directing these comments at anyone in particular and don't mean to offend anyone. Anyone that knows me, knows I would never hurt anyone's feelings, intentionally.

The intent is to maybe, promote a little self examination.

To borrow from a branch of our military.

Thank you for allowing me this little bit.

Hoping everyone a Great Holiday Season and a very Prosperous New Year.
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 2:34 pm:   

Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 10:16 am:   

Ghostbuster Mi Amigo, please don't let me or any of our little band of cynics stand in your way.

I'll even take no offense if you want to label or call me a 'non-believer' as well as cynic. I prefer realist, but that is my own little idiosyncratic quirk.

You Lads have at it: Committees. Discussions. Debates. Rules of Order. Agendas. Constitutions. Elections. Representatives. Officers. Dues. Quorums. Meetings. Motions. Amendments. Roll Calls. Minutes. And all.

The rest of us mean you no harm. We wish you no ill. We merely elect to opt out.

We can at least agree that the real beauty of a democracy lies in guaranteeing each of us one commonly shared right: Personal Choice.

Some of us prefer going to Buffalo to turn opportunity into gold so we don't have to drive the septic tank trucks.

Qualified adjusters will always have and find a place to work: whether it is on the road, local assignments, internationally, by telephone, in person, or by handling liability and workers comp (after all, some adjusters really are multi-line adjusters).

The world (of insurance and opportunity) really is a lot bigger than some of you may think.

Ghostbuster: I wouldn't trade any one of my hard earned advanced insurance designations for one single proposed committee assignment nor for all the boards and commissions in the world. Just doesn't work for me.

I'll retain my concentration, focus, belief in and reliance on education as the essential highway to a promising future. I'll watch while some of you dinosaurs pave your rocky way over the high mountains and low tundra ahead on seemingly parallel cartways of organization, unionization, group affirmation, and self designed though shallow certification.

Let the dinosaurs go ahead and throw rocks at and kill the messengers. It does not diminish the veracity of the message. Nor would a collegial genocide of our message establish nor authenticate your own message or method as vital to or necessary for any collective future success.

Perhaps only time and futility will provide the painful lessons of understanding which comes from the wisdom of experience that vicarious knowledge might well have spared you.

My Best Wishes Personally to Senor Ghostbuster and Monsieur Clayton for a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year 2002.

To everyone else a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year as well, and for me, New Year's Day also means Happy Birthday (I turn 52 on 1-1-02).
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 10:06 am:   

Thanx, Clayton.

With regards to forming any kind of unifying body; we have the threat to our survival, we have identified a means to survive, we have identified the solutions to the threat. What's next?

Shall we hang together? Or, shall we hang alone?

Our individual quality means nothing in this brave new world. All the CPCU, CLU, RIA, DDT, and MVP's are worthless when you are being replaced by some tobacco spitting contractor wearing pointy-toed boots and torn blue jeans. And, in fact, you are!

Remember the show tune that went, 'Show me ten men that are stout hearted men, and I'll soon show you ten thousand more!'? To say that, 'I'm just too independent in spirit', is a copout. If this leopard needs to change my spots, then I'm off to Walmart for the Grecian Formula hairdye! We can not afford not to make this happen.

Either we unite, or each of us can go back to driving the septic service truck.
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 9:24 am:   

Someone said that a "committee created the camel"
Now that is food for thought!

We will have to have a "mandatory" enrollment with the blessings of "vendors" and "carriers" before this will every get off the ground.
When being represented by "someone" the representor "has" to have the best interest of "ALL" and no interest in his/her own well being.

The New Year will be great, lets all think positive.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 9:02 am:   

Russ and Clayton, with all due respects, IMHO the lack of response by adjusters was more directly related to a lack of extra money to spend on attending an event than it was to a lack of enthusiasm. However, as we all know, the two (money and enthusiasm) often go hand in hand.

Add to that, there are a lot of independent type folks who just aren't big fans of serving on committees or aficionados of group exercises. I know, I am one of them.

We all need a $torm event. Buffalo looks like a real live one to me!
Russ Doe
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 8:06 am:   

Clayton, You are correct about the lack of response to the CADO banquet. I had approx. 8 people that were interested in getting together. Our independent nature doesn't support the call to band together. I still look forward to meeting all the CADO members at the Wind conference.
Have a great day!!
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 1:29 am:   

Ghost, I believe I know very little about the rationale of the American insurance accounting rule that disallows claim expenses from being included with claim payments, in the setting of premium rates.

Canada has no such impediment to developing rate structures.

Here, back from the 1950's through the 70's, there was a large influx of new carriers to Canada - all American; through to the last I can recall being the Progressive. Whether it was the likes of Firemans Fund or Crum & Forster, each a fair size carrier in their day here with branches accross the country - they were always referred to as 'profit centers' and there was a flow of cash south each year. I clearly recall American claims auditors (for the most part) being more concerned whether a file should have a staple, paper clip or Acco fastener holding the paper together than how we executed the settlement process, as long as it was a covered loss. They would look at 'adjusting expense' much the same way they did litigation costs or 'other specialist' costs (i.e. engineer), often commenting that the adjusting expense wouldn't be tolerated in the USA. I never until a few years ago understood the reason for that (i.e. your 'accounting rule') - I always thought they were suggesting (but not mandating) we should find some other way - without an increase in staff.

In Canada, 'Net Claim & Adjusting Expense' (AE = adjuster + legal = specialist etc) is a combination of net losses plus ALL claim costs associated with those losses. It is the first important ratio measured against 'Net Premiums Earned'. This is referred to as the "Earned Loss Ratio'; theoretically suggesting the quality of the written book and the overall performance of a claims department to settle the claims and at what cost.

Then, premium commissions, taxes, and general expense (salaries, rent, company cars, postage, etc) are added to create a 'Total Expense' expressed also as a ratio to Net Premiums Earned.

These two ratios are added to create the 3rd benchmark of the 'actual results' - called the "Combined Loss & Expense Ratio'. It is this figure that actuaries use to develop rates per line of business.

The only rates here that undergo any 'filing' and application for increase is auto (in most provinces). Property and pure casualty lines rates are at the sole discretion of the carrier. This of course causes the big cycles we see from 3-4 years of 'soft markets' then tightening for maybe a year - and start all over again.

I really do not understand why insurers would not be allowed to incorporate all their 'costs' in any decision regarding rates.

Would my presumption be correct that USA insurers can not include 'adjusting expense' (i.e. IA costs) in their cost calculations, but can include staff claim salaries, rent, company cars, equipment, etc etc?

I must be missing something in your equation, or the carriers would be paying more claims staff and paying them more, and all their office space would be in "A" buildings and the staff would be equipped with the very best of everything. I know some carrier claims staff in a few states - and I know they would argue that with me.

It would be interesting to know when and how this 'accounting rule' came about, and what arguments won the day for its' adoption.

I can not figure how an actuary can develop realistic rate structures without incorporating all costs for whatever line of business.

I'm sorry I've rambled, but I wanted to give you a comparative background of the issue.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 12:55 am:   

Tom, I know you were just passing along the sage advice of an elder, but I think we have been down this whole union discussion road before. In my experience unions tend to breed mediocrity and stifle individual initiatve. I've been on both sides of the union ball game. I've been a member of one (not by choice) and a member of management that had to deal with shop stewards. I felt used by the union when I was forced to pay dues and support policies I didn't agree with and had to face the possibility of a work stoppage at a time when I couldn't afford not to work.

When I was on the other side of the fence I felt that the union was nothing more than an obstacle to progress. It was bad enough that I had competition from outside the organization but I also had to deal with an enemy within. If you feel that anything should be done on this issue, I would suggest an organization like the American Medical Association, an industry trade group.

I believe that whatever it is you are trying to accomplish, it would be better to approach the powers that be as an ally and not an adversary, which is how all management types see unions, the enemy.
Tom Joyce (Tomj)
Posted on Saturday, December 29, 2001 - 12:05 am:   

I have relocated to San Antonio area for a variety of reasons and have had problems with my modem, so my posts are from a friends setup.
My family has been extremely union to the point where I have photos of major union orginazors sitting on my grandfathers porch.
As I was preparing to purge my laptop, I printed many of the articles from CADO.
My Dad, who is 81 years old started to read them and after oh about an hour asked why we were screwing around with the talk, get a union.
Tried to explain to him the nature of who we are, and he said "YOU can talk and bitch and complain all you want, but "you all" have to take a stand or fold the tents and walk away".
Just a thought from a person who was there.
Personally I do not ever see a union. After all we are "independant contractors", just passing this along.
Tom Joyce
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 10:21 pm:   

Confucius say:

Man with no shoes
Feel pity and blues
Until shoeless meet
Man with no feet.

Happy New Year To All

Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 9:01 pm:   

Clayton, I could begin a discourse on the varied psychological aspects of each of our psyches and the problems of ego and regionalism combined with the continued lack of work for 95% of the industry. But...I would get bored too easily and so would you.

Instead, would you favor us with what you know about the rationale of the accounting rule that disallows claim expense from being included with claim payments in the setting of premium rates?

I somehow get the impression that, over the past 200+ years, Canada still has difficulty comprehending the mentality of it's southern neighbor. Is there any validity to this?
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 7:42 pm:   

Folks, it is that time of being off from work that we start nit-picking and bickering, I know, I've done it. Soooooooooooooooooooo,
Lets all start a thread with nothing but ideas that "we" need to keep abreast in this business and keep working.
Let's all be brother Adjusters and stick together and support one another and try and help each other obtain work. We all are smart and we all supposedly know our jobs, so recommendations should come easy when telling A Vendor that you have a "Cat Friend" who also needs work.
Let us all do for one another this coming year and help and support one another.
I will, so count me in.
Good Luck to one and all and Happy New Year.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 6:53 pm:   

I've stayed away from CADO - with a sour taste in my craw - since shortly after my 2 part response to Mr. Flynt's 'leading' questions.

To me, it was unfortunate to read Roy's bulletin yesterday regarding the lack of any CADO activity ajoining the Windnetwork event. I conclude that was clearly due to lack of any positive response. I just don't understand the mechanism I suppose; there is so much yatta yatta about what we could / should to do improve our position within the industry, but little shown initiative do do much / anything about it.

Then I read Mr. Flynt's rather coarse comments, especially those of 12/27 @11.17PM. I personally do not find them supportive of any development of our issues, and wonder if there is some other underlying cause for them. Far less than 1% of any name I have encountered on this site knows anything about me nor has met me, yet my attempts to push / shove / roll the betterment of our cause forward, is met with 'self serving' innuendos and other negative ramblings. I suggest the comments referred to above by Mr. Flynt does more to erase the ambitions and aspirations of any potential evolution of our community; than any possibility of support for it.

However, turning away from the dark side to the sunshine I see; we have Gale's sound comments of 12/28 @1.03PM as a refreshing rebuttal to Mr. Flynt, and of course the reliable Ghost with his pointed and timely comments to the always "Wong Whey'.

Who knows, maybe someone will emerge on this site in 2002; that knows how to hand milk all four quarters of the cow we try and get some cream from, and I don't mean a Vendor.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 1:03 pm:   

Jim I think you are very realist but I strongly disagree that your very negative post was in line with the cause of Roy. If Roy felt that there was no hope to improve the lot of the CAT adjuster he would not have wasted his time, thought and money into making CADO what it has become in the insurance industry today. From the parable of the sow we know not every seed is going to bear fruit but we do know some seeds will give back 100 times of what went into the ground.

Jim most people are not born leaders but are followers of others, which is a good thing. Most leaders do not do a lot of direct work but work very hard to lead the follows that in turn get the work done. A leader is not one that tells the followers that they are just wasting their time trying to improve their lot in life but he or she helps them to find the best way to achieve their goal.

Henry Ford is given credit for saying, “One only sees the problems when he takes his eyes off of the goal”. If one is to look at the reason why something can’t be done before one gets excited about the possible results of an endeavor he will never take the first step forward. One does not go after 50 states today but only 1 that should be relative easy to be successful at changing. It is easier for most humans to follow by sight instead of by faith.

Internal forces and not external forces will determine the success or failure of PowerClaim, Simsol, MS&B, Xactimate and others that are coming along. We can see that in the case of the investors of DDS as well as Boeckh investors’ decision to exit the adjusting software market in 2001 at apparently fire sale prices. I expect Boston Ventures was interested in each of them because the buying price was in line for them to get the selling price in line with the users expectations and still be profitable, after all 90% of the hard work required for financial success has already been done by the former investors. External forces are real but it is the internal forces response to them that spells success or failure for an organization.

Jim some are looking for hope of a better tomorrow but will quite a drop of the hat if someone that they look up to starts saying, can’t, can’t, can’t... :(

By the way here is a quote that was shared with me yesterday.

One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important.

Bertrand Russell
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 12:21 pm:   

Wong Whey, your sarcasm continues to miss the target and, as an added bonus, be offensive to the readers.

In fact, my sweet little pineapple chunk, ice dam claims can be handled, albiet poorly, over the phone by a Big Red kid at Fire Central in Florida where the air conditioner is blowing cold air. A contractor could be dispensed with except where an Insured raises a stink or there may be an unrepaired prior damage issue.

Career damaging events are facing our trade here on the mainland. Perhaps in your tropic paradise, life is diferent. In any event, we would appreciate more substance and less abusive fluff on your part.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 10:31 am:   

Mmmm let's see. There's 6 feet of snow on the rooftops in Buffalo and you want to sit by the fireplace here and debate the finer points of preferred contractors hurting adjusters? (Wonder if preferred contractors are sitting around the fire debating a way to whup us or out working and making dinero?)

Geeze. It's called getting a life. Email me if you need a detailed road map.
Posted on Friday, December 28, 2001 - 8:31 am:   

Direct repairs by contractors of claims made sounds good on paper,however it does not work. Contractors lack the integrity required. This is my opinion and I have many files to prove it. Who on these boards would hand a contractor their Visa card and alow them to repair their own indiviual residence. I suspect the very thought of such an occurance would make most adjusters rather nervous. I recieved a bill the other day for sanding and sealing a 2x4,the bill was for $48.00 from a very nice direct bill contractor. I recomended the contractor be paid $ 6.00 to replace the wood rather than $ 48.00 to massage it. It`s really just elementry math, not rocket science. Direct bill will never work....
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 11:57 pm:   

It was well said that we are the adjusters of last resort, and I wonder do we want it any other way. The more structure we build the less freedom we get , and many of us are here because we escape the corporate structure. If the meeting go ahead, I hope those there remember this. (it's looks different when I'm on the road). The need for us will come and go, the skilled will always find work and survive, but, as I start at my computor in my hotel, where else would I want to be. Hope you'll get to buffelo but it's much warmer here in California.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 11:17 pm:   

No Gale. I sound like a REALIST, which is what I am.

I'll leave the pie in the sky stuff to those with nothing better to do than tilt at windmills.

Good Luck Gale and with your strong belief in and devotion to the cause, I nominate you to lead the charge.

Just think Gale, should you succeed (which you seemingly feel is both attainable and necessary), you will no doubt he a HERO to all the cat adjusting Lads, and riding on your success, SIMSOL, DDS and Xactimate would all be history.

There's a challenge for you Gale. Now don't let all the CADO cat guys down. Go ahead and prove this old cynical pessimistic REALIST wrong.

(I've been there, done that, and have the T-Shirt. Thanks but NO THANKS. Count me out!)
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 10:34 pm:   

Jim you sound like one of those “Can’t Help It” Baptist of yesteryear. Change is not brought about by non-believes but by those that believe it is for the good of others as well as themselves. What needs to be done can be done or it did not need to be done in the first place.

The next thing we know you will be telling us all to join the Democratic party and they will take care of us because we are all too poor and lazy to make the impossible happen. The impossible can happen but it takes just takes longer than the possible but since most quit long before that then the impossible really is the impossible in their case. Don’t you agree? Anyway here is a link that indicates there may be work ahead for the ones that are looking forward to the next phone call if weather has anything to do with CATS.
mike stephenson (Photoadjuster)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 5:34 pm:   

This might make a few of you feel better.

In the last 5 months, 2 different carriers, with the help of the PhotoAdjuster Software, have caught 3 separate direct contractors (2 body shops & 1 fire restoration) editing or enhancing their digital photos to increase their repair bills.

There are now 3 less direct repair contractors :)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 5:13 pm:   

Well, there you have it folks, might as well tuck our tail between our legs and go apply for those burger flippin jobs before Ghostbuster does.

By the way Ghost, I hear that taco bending at the local Taco-Bell pays slightly higher wages, you just have to se habla.

PS thanks Jim !
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 3:56 pm:   

OK Folks. It's time for a reality check here.

For starters, to insist or require that anyone handling a claim be a licensed adjuster, means that someone is going to have to first lobby the 17 states which do not require adjuster licenses. And among this group, some large and notable standouts: Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Virginia.

Next, to insist or require changes in the accounting rules for insurance companies is going to require approval by the 50 insurance commissioner's offices in America. Heck, they can't even agree on Model national insurance codes within their own organization, the NAIC, after dozens of years of trying.

Now to insist or require changes in the General Statutes of the 50 states are going to require equal lobbying efforts with those who will lobby in opposition: including the insurance industry and the Remodelers Council of the National Association of Homebuilders. The NAHB by the way, has one of the largest PAC's and one of the largest full time lobbying staffs of any trade organization in the U.S. as well as paid lobbyists in each and every state. Their annual expenditures for political lobbying as I recall is somewhere around $25 Million dollars. And the American Insurance Industry as well has one of the larger PAC's and one of the largest fulltime lobbying staffs in the US. Good luck going up against that kind of money and ingrained power.

I suggest we are where we are now for a lot of reasons: the lack of cooperation by Mother Nature in causation of catastrophic events, our failure to police our own, the failure to create credible standards of professionalism, a failure to adopt TQM standards for claims handling, and the innate characteristics of an industry which allow for a cyclical turnover in so many warm bodies only interested in a fast buck.

Sometimes I honestly think this industry survives in spite of itself.

As the Chairman of Lindsey Cunningham so accurately reminds us in his rather candid remarks before the London Insurance Institute: "we (cat adjusters) are the adjusters of last resort."

The predictable yet periodically irregular nature of working cats and making money is just a small but expected part of the risk we take in seeking the greater rewards which sometimes come our way.

Elephants will fly, scarecrows will be tap dancing in our streets, and hell freezing over before anyone is successful in changing the insurance accounting rules, eliminates preferred contractors, or changes the irregular nature of our work and pay schedules.

If anyone wants a regular paycheck, a regular work schedule, and enhanced benefits, may I suggest considering a shift over to the carrier staff side of the industry.

And Ghostbuster, I am not a cynic. I'm merely a realist.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 3:35 pm:   

Been there, to deal with the carriers is futile. It's just like trying to deal with the Borg on Star Trek. We must cut to the chase and legislatively change the fundamental rules that the carriers live by, i.e., the lack of financial incentive to use us by way of that accounting rule that disallows claim expense, (that's you and me and the entire claims department), to be used in the setting of premium rates. And, laws that forbid anyone other than an a real adjuster from going anywhere near a claim.

There is no negotiating, it's this or we wither and fade away. Some may say this is just another cycle in the claim business. I disagree, because of the contraction of the insurance industry in the past 17 years, we are in a downward spiral, just like water going down a drain.
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 3:20 pm:   

Every time the ins. cos to a direct contractor system it blows up in their faces. Why not a direct adjuster network, which checks the contractors out for a reduced fee?
Why not a direct adjuster network servicing the claims process? A bean counter could see that there is a 35-40% per claim that is given to the vendor(s) which in turn sends out the unqualified, which in turn makes the adjusters who have some competency look bad. The old saying, "one bad apple spoils the whole bunch", really applies here.
I am not for geting rid of the entire system, but it is obvious that due to supply and demand we are slowly getting our throats cut.
ps happy new year :)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 12:36 pm:   

OK, so we now know that changing the accounting rules to allow claims handling expenses to be expensed along with the claim AND passing a law that allows ONLY licensed adjusters to handle claims will in essence negage the downward trend of the CAT business. Even the carriers would go along with this, think about it, it would help them and make their job easier. Other threads on this site have been expounding on what to do, well here is the solution, plain and simple and it can be boiled down to less than three lines of text, easy for all to understand.

Now all these fellows that want to hold meetings and form committees need to get a grip on this solution, and RUN WITH IT. How about it, Jim, Clayton, Dave ???

PS Thanks Ghostbuster !
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 9:31 am:   

Oldtimer hit the nail hard on the head. The legislated changing of that asinine accounting rule would remove the financial stumbling block for claims expense. Mind you, this change would also greatly benefit the carriers own staff claims people as well. They are in this same leaky boat with us, don't forget.

The second, and just as vital, purpose is to get legislation saying that only licensed adjusters that are solely in the business of adjusting can handle an insurance claim.

Have you ever wondered why a vehicle manufacturer doesn't set up a company store and sell direct to the public? It's because way back when the independent car dealers formed an association to lobby and then achieved legislation saying that only THEY can sell a new car or truck. The vehicle manufacturer must funnel its products thru these middlemen. Other trade groups have done likewise. Precedent has been set. This is clearly what we must do, also.

It's really quite simple, folks. The initial thinking for NACA was along these lines but was sidelined when the vendors were politiced by the carriers to neuter these ideas. The same coercing occurred to the Order of the Blue Goose, a kind of fraternal marketing association, because the carriers sought to discourage contact twixt their employees and the employees of other carriers. That is why any CADO originated association must be born with claws, fangs, and bad attitude in our pursuit of our basic survival.

If my thoughts scare you, you're not alone. They scare the crap outta me, too. But no more than what the carriers are doing to us right now.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 7:33 am:   

Memo to Oldtimer: A year or so ago, I did seriously consider jumping over to the other side. I went out on exactly one claim involving water damage where there was non-associated mold damage, and after reviewing the damage and file, actually agreed with the IA adjustment, and the way the independent adjuster handled the file and what the carrier offered for payment. That's a pretty fatal conclusion to arrive at and remain a P.A.

In the end, I decided I just didn't have the stomach for public adjusting and no amount of money or income would ever make me comfortable with it. I am not knocking public adjusting, it's just not my cup of tea.

There are some excellent public adjusters out there (Bill Cook comes to mind), just as there are many inept unqualified IA's. As long as there are inept unqualified independent adjusters, there will always be a public need and a place for public adjusters to thrive. (Bill Cook might want to share his thoughts on this subject as well).

My best wishes to anyone wanting to make the jump. It may seem appealing, but even public adjusting is not a "cakewalk." You still have to chase down clients and claims, and when there is little going on with the IA side of the equation, there is generally little going on with the P.A. side.

It just seems to me that IA adjusters who cannot make a living representing carriers are unlikely to make much of a living representing the public as a P.A. Both positions require hard work, never ceasing marketing of skills, quality customer service, and careful attention to policy interpretation and detail. While the grass may seem greener on the other side, it still needs mowing.

But you are correct that things are slow out there in adjusting, and within the past year, I have returned full time to my previous life in the business of real estate development and consulting. Like many cat adjusters, I am blessed with outside income and investment income sources which allow me to be independent of cat adjusting as a primary or dependent source of income.

While I have learned to never say never, with the continuing decline in demand and erosion of income, I foresee no return to full time cat adjusting (although I am currently on standby for ice dams in Buffalo).

Given my love for the insurance industry, I will continue to diligently pursue an advanced insurance education and designations as well as teach and consult in risk management as demand dictates.

And as always, I'll continue to weigh in here on CADO from time to time with my thoughts, ideas and opinions regarding the problems, perils, potential and practices of catastrophe adjusting.

Cat adjusting. It just gets in your blood doesn't it?
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 11:31 pm:   

Adjusters can work both sides of a claim. PA and IA. If the carriers stomp on the IA too much then there will be more PA's. I think a bunch of well educated PA's can cause more grief for the carriers than a bunch of well educated IA's. Any way you look at it the "adjuster" will be around for quite some time. The best way to approach the legal and lobby aspect is to change the accounting rules to allow the carriers to treat adjusting fees the same as losses and be able to recover them with rate increases or re-insurance.

Hell, one of the old-time CADO adjusters, Jim Flynt has taken the PA route. What say he?
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 9:32 pm:   

Jim, have you heard of Property Claims Solutions (PCS) out of Jacksonville, FL? A PowerClaim user signed up with them and called me is how I came to know about them. Our user said that Paul Davis started the firm. Mr. Davis had sold Paul Davis Systems to a Canadian company five years ago so I just expected it to be another Preferred Contractor firm.

With at least two PowerClaim users on board with them had me scratching my head. Well I was invited to come down and meet Paul Davis and his staff so I went. The bottom line is PCS uses licensed adjusters to settle the claim for a basic fee, that is the property damage part of the claim but no contents, ALE, etc. If the loss converts into a job for a contractor in the network then the adjuster gets 3% - 5% of the total loss, the contractor gets 91% of the total loss with the remaining balance going to PCS.

Well I have over simplified the plan but it does not cut out the adjuster but they do not take on CAT losses because they only make good money if a contractor in the PCS network gets the job therefore they can’t handle a high volume of claims. Paul Davis is one that is easy to respect and he seems to have surrounded himself with some quality staff.

He has been proto typing this idea for sometime but just this year went for regional coverage in both adjusters and contactors so it is a new concept but integrity seems to be there so I expect it will turn out to be successful. They are only talking about 300 – 400 adjusters even down the road when they are nationwide in the US market so it is not a lot of opportunity but does address a major concern of ours at Hawkins Research, Inc.

We are seeing local IA’s loose old accounts because of new regional and national virtual based adjusting firms (the same ones that are strong enough to handle the smaller CATS we have seen over the past two years). PCS is growing their network quickly by appealing to the 1 – 3 man firms. PCS claims are coming on top of their current workload and if they do not want to continue a relationship with PCS there is no contract tying them in place plus they stand to make some good bucks. Plus if there is contents, ALE, etc then there is billable time for that if the carrier request that service which is billed directly to the carrier by the adjuster or his firm because PCS only is involved with the property damage itself. Again it is a twist off of the old way but the adjuster is still lead man

Again PCS is not set up to handle CAT losses but it is a way for the small IA’s to have a chance at competing with these eager low cost virtual adjusting firms that are on the rise. After meeting their management and listening to our users explain why PCS appeals to them I now agreed the concept has merit. Having the contractor pay the claims handling cost reduces the carriers none recoverable claims handling cost to ZERO but the adjuster is still part of the food chain.

P.S. Ghost is right again folks, do you have the stomach for politics? As an Optomerist I know a lot of dollars and billable chair time has been given to the cause of insuring that the profession could do and be rewarded for what its members have proved they had the ability to do. It has been a 30 year struggle in that profession at this point. Consider renting a house in your state capital for the cause so there is a place to work from and a place for the warriors to sleep while in town coaching the snail forward.
Tom Joyce (Tomj)
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 9:19 pm:   

I know it is an old subject, but I thought I'd throw it out there for new inputs.
I do believe in the current litigation modes that the contractor programs will eat some companies shorts.
Imagine at trial when a company is asked why a contractor was sent out to handle a claim which also results in policy questions and associated guidance why a licenced respensantive of the company wasn't available.
Oh well, the posts are watched, but that is my feelings.
Tom Joyce
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 9:07 pm:   

Yep, that's the problem! Here is the solution.

If this organized lovefest ever does get off the ground, it's El Grande, Numero Uno, and Big Enchilada purpose is to lobby the state legislatures to get laws enacted to protect us from the this brave new world the carriers are promoting.

The lawyers did it. The new car dealers did it. We can do it. We must protect our industry of catastrophe adjusting.

There is no sense in wasting time trying to convince the carriers of our virtues. They DO NOT CARE! Either we control our destiny, or we move onto other careers. Sink or swim, kids.

The solution to our problem and the prime directive of a CADO association can only be legislated protection of our own industry.
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 8:56 pm:   

Jim and Tom,

Dead on time. The contractors "can" afford to do this for "nothing" because they have a lead that normally they would "pay" someone for. A week of 3000.00 claims is 15k to 20k a week in revenue and a lot of profit so they are really, no matter, how you cut it or describe it or anything else, taking "our" money and "our" job.
nuff said from this end, that is exactly how I feel and I further think they are doing enough that when checked and a "mistake" is found, they say oh, it was a new estimator and "he" no longer is with us. It won't happen again, thats one out of 100, say, and the other 99 are gravyyyyyy.
Happy new year and lets all hang in there and bear down to get this thing going our way for a change.
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 7:13 pm:   


Good question, although I’m sure you already know the answer to it.

The contractor’s are not SETTLING CLAIMS. According to those that they have to answer to, they are simply:
1) Taking photographs
2) Measuring
3) Doing diagrams
4) Writing estimates of the damage
5) Reporting to the carriers

Gee, what is that independent adjusters do then?
1) Take photographs
2) Measure
3) Do diagrams
4) Write estimates of the damage
5) Report to the carriers.
They do all this for a HUGE FEE BILL, which is a CLAIMS EXPENSE.

We have been here before and won’t discuss it again. But for those of us that think that we need the PREFERRED CONTRACTOR OR THEY ARE NOT HURTING US, then you will probably be the next independent adjuster that sits home on the next storm because they are doing 10% to 20% of the claims.

Happy New Year.

Jim Lakes RPA
National Catastrophe Director
RAC Adjustments, Inc.

PS> For those of you that think this is a negative post instead of a postive post, think about it.
Tom Joyce (Tomj)
Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2001 - 3:43 pm:   

Just a quick question, or area to respond to.
Whatever happened to response time, settlement time, etc. mandated by vertially all states with claims handling.
We all know the contractors are not complying and at the same time settling loses with out being properly licensed.
As we approach the New Year, something to think about.
Posted on Tuesday, December 25, 2001 - 11:39 am:   

sorry,kathaleen and the rest , merry christmas too!!
also, saw a guy yesterday that got his check from the pilot overtime deal in CA and it was GOOD! money for a christmas. more than a weeks pay and he was just sitting on the fence to see what happened, wasn/t there but 3-4 months on wind storm
have a great day.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Tuesday, December 25, 2001 - 10:15 am:   

As you can see, I do have a dark side of my soul that ocasionally shows thru. Can we hear from some of the Pilot adjusters doing Big Blue work? What's it like riding the range for that brand?
Posted on Tuesday, December 25, 2001 - 8:15 am:   

Along the lines of the message from toms-

Shoot, girls, let's have US a Merry Christmas too!!!

Oh. And Happy Holidays to all those who do not celebrate Christmas, but celebrate other holidays around this time of year.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Tuesday, December 25, 2001 - 2:15 am:   

Heck if THIS (cat adjusting) were EASY, EVERYone and his brother would be doing it.

mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 9:40 pm:   

The discusions have been interesting and educational. I suspect that a good multiline adjuster will always find enough crumbs one way or another. When we get the call we will come running, and somehow there always seems to be enough money in the job to justify our time. Meanwhile some contractors are going to get very rich of big red, and probably sufficate under the piles of dough they make. Meanwhile I hope that everyone has a very merry christmas season. Times have been tough before and will get better and then tough again. Just remember what I heard when I got to Caifornia a few weeks ago. Many companies are finding it tough out here, even the dried plum business had to prune staff.
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 8:09 pm:   

shoot, boys, lets have a good christmas as possible and put all this behind us and get those guys next year.

merry christmas to one and all.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 6:37 pm:   

Here's the thing...several times over the past decade I've, honest to God, tried to be a good little compliant drone and fit back into the company scene. It didn't work. It didn't work because once you've breathed the rarefied air and soared with other kindred spirits AND, most importantly, earned what an adjuster is really worth, you can't go back. The gypsy blood has grown in your veins, the anti-corporate attitude is flourishing in your soul. It is like Gale trying to go back and manufacture slide rules.

If, as Swami Clayton predicts, adjusting is to become obsolete along with the agents being replaced by 800#s and internet sales, I will take solace and $20,000/year in a government job rather than share existance with any carrier. Increasingly, I perceive that I am the worlds best buggy whip in a world without buggy's.

Or, is this me having a male menopause moment?
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 2:56 pm:   

Ghost this is to be expected. Based to real live carriers that I talk with are telling me they had like 120 to 140% loss ratio last quarter. That means changes will be made, even if they are wrong because of the internal pressure being put on them.

If it is a fact that using adjusters on property claims is a financial loser for the carriers then long-term it is bad for the vendors and their pool of adjusters. On the other hand if any vendors and/or adjusters feel that adjusters are in fact somewhat of an asset to the insurance industry then they should quantify and qualify that fact and market that fact to the bean counters. You can bet the Preferred Contractor types may be marketing with data that indicate adjusters are nothing more than a rip-off. No they are not coming out with those words in many cases but that is still their marketing message.

Folks, McDonalds has proven success is in the marketing of one’s services NOT in quality. People do not beat a path to your door if you make a better mouse trap! People will take consistent low quality year after year if your marketing skills are good enough and your quantity is high enough. Satisfaction is a perception not a reality.

Do the research if you are not afraid of the facts.

As I went to post this I saw that Tom is on track.
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 2:31 pm:   

I just worked a wind CAT in California for one of the big 3. I was told by neighbors of my insureds that State Farm is not sending out adjusters. One neighbor was told "we just don't have enough adjusters" so they were instructed to obtain estimates from roofers. The fox is getting fat while the hen population dwindles!!! The downside, for the insureds, is that getting a contractor/roofer OUT is very difficult and getting the written estimate is next to impossible. Customer service is totally out the window.

Now this is not hard fact as I didn't have the time to verify it. However, it is what I heard numerous times when the neighbors would wander over to see what company had an adjuster out on the roof!

Take it and run Ghost!
Tom Joyce (Tomj)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 2:26 pm:   

The only issue is how to market our skills.
Items such as contractor control and reinspections come to mind.
Reinspections of losses handled by company personel by an independant party.
How about marketing our policy skills (for those who have them).
Face it the market is in turmoil, I heard several smaller mutuals will be lucky to have New Year parties.
We have to be inovative, that is what has been preached by many of the "old timers" including some of our vendor friends.
Well the only thing I see changing the situation in the near future is a major catastrophic event and our responce to it.
Think about the fact that what has put us in this situation is greed on the part of some, bragging on the part of many.
Have a Merry Christmas and a safe New Years
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 1:38 pm:   

Ghost and to think that blood letting ever went out of style during the medieval age.

BTW, the Washington Post has some of the best Want Ads in their Sunday editions. And has numerous ads online for staff and staff cat team positions for qualified adjusters.

Ghost, it sure looks like we are going to get another chunk of that West Virginia or Kentucky coal again this Christmas from Santa in our stocking, if we even get that. And to think, that you and I were sooooooooo good this year!

As a friend of mine used to say, if it were raining prostitutes, you and I would get hit on the head by a pansy.

Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 11:54 am:   

Me and the Grinch are sitting around and guess what we hear on the radio? Mind you, not six months ago Big Red was running a heartfelt, tear-jerker commercial extolling the heroic virtue of their adjusters. Now they are running commercials for their 'premier service' where a contractor will be sent out and fix it. No adjuster will call!

Yep! I feel it too. It's that warm, wet, stinging sensation when blood is running down your back from the knife hole. One funny aspect of this is that the vendors are getting the shaft as well as us. I know this is nothing new, it is merely another indication of our brave new world.

Anyone out there contemplating the glorious wonders of a storm trooping career should take heed and probaly keep their day job. Like Jimmy Flynt has intimated, the first thing we dinosaurs read each day in the paper is the employment want ads. Does that give you another hint?

And the grinch says, Ho! Ho! Ho!
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 9:34 pm:   

If we were all sittin around I recon I would call all this pratter just lip service. Now I guess I gotta just call it finger service. Really now, dont you think we also aught to organize all the farmers too? This is a real exercise!
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 9:10 pm:   

Hey Fellow Cat adjusters, Just a moment to say to one and all.

Merry Christmas and wishing you the very best for the upcoming "years"!
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 8:32 pm:   

I was reading the post made concerning "One of the most damaging and one of the most unprofessional statements about""us","made by one of 'us'";with a request that it be removed, and other ramblings of much sense and some non-sense.

I kept asking why this response???

IMHO, The statement says nothing of "no-one" It casts "no" lingering doubts over anyone. It measures no ones ability or inability, it really say absolutely nothing, other than, Based on someones experience, and previous posts on this web site, that most of the catastrophe adjusters as we know them, that the "image" of the cat adjuster , whether dressed in a "suit",dockers with red shirts and hats , cowboy boots and jeans (and a BIG belt buckle), or a santa claus outfit is the same.
You do get what you pay for" and from my experience and discussions with the "CM's" and even the "owners" of carriers and vendors,they too, know this. We all are quite aware of the "1st" call outs, on scenes, always working,cat adjusters whom DO provide the product/package that seems to work each and every storm or callout and for most all vendors.
I guess the "old adage" may have offended. However, the meaning of the post was not intended that way at all. It was meant to open eyes as to where and what direction our profession is going and "why". It's called think about it, men, the times they are gonna change and we always change with them under most every circumstance.
Oh yeah, shelf life !
"The shelf life of some are longer than that of others. Godiva Chocolate (most consider the best) does not stay on the shelf as long as M & M's but guess what they both really do "melt in your mouth" and Yes, your hands also".
Now, try and keep positive, maybe all will be at work soon.
Have a Merry Christmas to one and all!!
Any post which one would consider detrimental or damaging or even in bad taste, should and can be removed by the moderators if they deem it to be.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 8:11 pm:   

The more I ponder, the more I recognize that until we create a trade association on a national and, And, AND for each state along the lines that the lawyers have, all this high toned puffery is just so much urinating into the wind. As hired temporary laborers, we can take it or leave it, but individually have no say over the negotiations. In one sense, we are no diferent from the day laborers waiting downtown for a truck to come by each morning.

How's that for negativity, sour attitude, doom & gloom, and a woe is me, pity party? Clayton, everyone else here gets to have a PMS moment and I can too! That is one of the basic rights of being a citizen of the USA and a tax paying Texan. I can only suspect that Canada is not so blessed to have this primal human entitlement. I'll have you know that we Yankees, or if you're closer to the Rio Bravo border, a Gringo, we have raised whining to an art form!

So, whatta ya think of that?
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 5:52 pm:   

Different month same conversation. We at the present time have no input in any part of the negotiations regarding the carriers and the vendors. We are like the blind leading the blind. It has nothing to do with quality, certifications, training or any other thing we come up with. It has to do with the $, that is spent handling, processing and procuring claims. Because of the supposed independent nature of our business, we run and find a spot until it dries up and move on to the next deal.
What is going to happen when the big 3 supposedly go "paperless", and you are stuck in mugwhump minnesota motel sharing ten phone lines with alot of other adjusters? You fad better hope ther is a lot of good reruns on the tube because you will ahve alot of time to watch it.
I don't see a change in any of the fee schedules reflecting the amount of headache that goes along with just that one problem. But as usual we will grin and bear it and pray they invent a wireless dsl line you can mount on your truck like a sattelite dish, same fee schedule I might add. It is time my friends to think of a way to lobby OUR concerns. Other than that all is good this xmas season. :)
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 2:14 pm:   

Jim, in response to your Q2 - "What redefining is needed and how do we attain it?"

This is 2 parts, lets look at 'redefining' first. As I have said / suggested in other forums;
".... we must fundamently change in style, perception, type of work sought, and operation technique ...."
".... we should as a community expend our energy and thoughts into how we again can become a reliable and professional alternative, in response to a carriers needs ...."
".... the industry is creating a new 'playing surface' as they change and adapt to what they see will lead to their further growth and profitibility. I have suggested that we must recognize our changing work environment, and adapt with it; before we must react to it ...."

Also see me 2 part post, starting 11/11/01 @ 12.40AM, in the "Proper claim file techniques" forum.

Also see my post, 12/09/01 @ 10.34PM, in the "CADO .... development organization (Standards for adjusters)" forum.

I do think with the above, that I have given sufficient indications of my vision of what 'redefining' is necessary. This of course can be greatly expanded on, but I clearly see the medium for such a discussion as being a meeting with others who share to whatever extent the same thoughts. I have suggested this, and later supported a meeting in February 2002, prior to the Windnetwork conference.

Part 2 - how to attain .... our redefined professional image?

As I have said / suggested in other forums;
see my post of 11/19/01 @ 4.19PM, in the "Could / should CADO community evolve?" forum
see my post of 12/09/01 @ 10.15 PM, in the "CADO .... development organization (Feasibility discussion)" forum.

I again think that with the above, that I have given sufficient indication of my vision of 'how'. Time, and especially space are too limited to expand further on that here. To give more specifics would require considerable elaboration. I clearly see the medium for such a discussion as this, as being a meeting with others who share to whatever extent the same notions. Again, I have suggested this, and later supported a meeting in February 2002 prior to the Windnetwork conference.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 1:55 pm:   

Jim, in regards to your questions resulting from my statement, ".... all we have to do is adapt and improvise, along with redefining our professional image"; the following is my attempt at an answer.

Q1 - "How carriers / vendors now perceive cat adjusters current professional image"

Oddly, I read your bulletin response concerning cat definitions and designations; before I read your post that contained your questions. The former, made me think of a recent chat I had with a Claims Manager (CM) that picks up directly to this first question. Anyway, the foundation of my response to this issue is based on discussions with carrier CM people, who are at least a good acquaintance and that can talk openly with me. These sources, only 6 and representing 4 large multinational carriers; are located in Canada, England and the USA. They all are accountable for management of any 'cat' within their regions, they all follow CADO to some degree, I consider each a professional career claims person - the most junior has 16 years at this business of claims; and they all are scared to death of a significant claims event hitting their regions.

Their upper management is all over them each time there is any type of weather related blip in claims activity. They are staffed only to meet 'average' claims volumes at best, but the concerns from their 'executive committees' and the like is whether the 'weather claims' will reach the threshold to kick in facultative reinsurance, and never related to how are the claims going to be handled; or whether these claims will reach another defined threshold that will reduce their net retentions and cap their losses causing treaty reinsurance to perhaps (when all the numbers are crunched) to bear a portion.

Excuse me for wandering, but I wanted you to see the internal forces playing on these individuals; before considering the 'external forces'. Without exception, each of these CMs will do whatever they can to avoid having to 'call in' cat vendors, who in turn supply the cat adjusters. By and large, there is no negative attitude towards cat vendors; but it is clearly the fear of who is going to do the claims - the cat adjusters. These CMs have a clear picture in their heads that cat adjusters are not insurance claims people; but simply an assembly of roofers, siders, carpet merchants, and renovators - that are out there for a fast buck. Remember, these CMs are 'students' of policy language, interpretation, coverage, investigation and analysis; that is the route they took to their current position. I argue / discuss with them that not all of "us" are like that, but the main response is; ".... but I have no control over who actually / specifically comes and does the claims once the cat vendor is engaged. I've told them they should, I've suggested they sit with their cat vendors (and they do trust and respect the vendor they engage) and set 'standards' or criteria to suit the type of claims they believe they will be faced with. Lack of time and / or control issues seem to get in the way of this, and the rebuttal that a 'licence' is no measure of any 'standard'.

The source of complaints that come back up the line to haunt these people is mostly professional image issues; cat adjusters showing up unannounced to an insured's door, dressed in such a way to cause concern for the insured, then portraying a poor attitude. This is followed by the work 'product', mostly cause / coverage issues, followed by the extent of allowed damages.

Therefore, I suggest only from within the parameters of those carrier people that I can discuss these things with openly; that there is a very low perception of the current cat adjuster professional image.

I want to also refer you back to my 3 part post, starting 11/08/01 @ 1.53PM, in the "Proper claim file techniques" forum; as well as numerous posts I made in the "Will cat adjusting be dead ..." forum; where issues related to this were brought forward.

I can not provide any comment on how vendors now perceive our current professional image. I have never asked that nor discussed that with a cat vendor. I suggest you redirect that question to someone else.

I may be running out of room here, so I'll post again in response to your Q2.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 11:24 am:   

Well Jim, it has been an interesting journey since you posed your questions in response to my recent post. I ventured down various trails in my mind about how, or whether I should respond. Last night I kept thinking that I had in some form answered your questions, with other posts, in other forums; so I had to fumble through numerous threads to confirm this. I had pretty well concluded last night that if I responded today, it would be brief and basically would reference other posts.

My underlying concern about responding at all to your questions is rooted in the fact that I didn't have anything good to say regarding the portion of Q1 that I could answer; and my thoughts in response to Q2; .... well as you ask - am I brave enough?

But, what do I see this morning when I come back to this thread? I see one of the most damaging and one of the most unprofessional statements about "us", made by one of "us"; that I have likely ever encountered on this website. I suggest to you, everyone of us that has seen it, and any CADO moderator; that it should have been removed as quickly as possible.

As I have said before, "we" are all measured by each others' actions. As I have said before, "we" are a 'product'. If one of "us" is not only carrying, but also advertising the label, ".... you give for what you get paid ....", and further warrants that product label with the likes of, ".... this product will 'give' in relation to what you pay for it and how many times you order it ...."; who the hell is going to buy that 'product'? You, me, and everyone else here is on the same 'shelf' wanting to be 'purchased'; what does that do to our chances? What does that do to our existing image? What does that do for how others perceive "us"?

So, I am brave enough now, but somewhat disgusted that no one has taken exception to this point in the day, of the 'ridgewalker' comment.

I'll respond to your questions in a separate post.
Posted on Thursday, December 20, 2001 - 1:57 am:   

The Old adage, "you get what you pay for" is always in effect! Perhaps, it should be "you give for what you get paid for" I don't know, but our image, slicked back hair with dockers or cowboy hat and 'BIG' buckles are the same. The product you give "usually" results in the pay you recieve or how often you are called out.
Merry Christmas and good luck in finding work for one and all.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 10:31 pm:   

Perhaps the problem is that adjusters are expecting logic to be involved. :)
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 9:27 pm:   

Clayton, I was quite taken by the last sentence of your last post when you wrote: "All we have to do is adapt and improvise, along with redefining our professional image." I am in wholehearted agreement with your statement. Particularly of interest, to me at least, is the second part of your sentence regarding redefinition of professional image.

I wonder if you would be brave enough to perhaps expound further on two points:

(1) How carriers and/or vendors now perceive cat adjusters' current professional image?


(2) What redefinition of cat adjusters' professional image is needed and how do we attain it?
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 7:15 pm:   

All will remember that a "BIG" carriers, has us on most all assignments, damaged or not, prepare a detailed diagram with to the "inch" measurements and photos of front,sometimes rear or overview of slopes each one. IF and a big IF, this information is available AND the adjuster on the phone has it, he can multiply and calculate the squares add minimum charges for interior,if any, send check less deduct and claim is closed.
Preferred contractors at a cate site, I worked, have the smart advantage of what?? You guessed it, Digital Cameras, SOOOO, write estimate,(with Xactimate,DDS,Boeche, Simsol, they buy the same programs we do) then do a diagram,take photos, Send in those items, and as Activity notes reflect, PREF>KTOR>PAY DIRECT TO P/H&KTOR>INFO>IN>FILE>.
No adjuster, No Inspection, No worries about coverage, No E&O, No gripe about fees,No outside adjustment expense. No reinspection , and the policy holders are happy, yep, you guess it NO DEDUCTIBLE!!!
And the KTOR comes by with a box of chocolates for christmas for the "inside" adjusters to eat while approving the claims payments.
go figure
Have a Merry Christmas
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 6:18 pm:   

Donita, no, the example you gave is not the future of adjusting. Alas, it is a cycle in the type of adjusting. Property 'Telephone adjusting' was an invention in the mid to late 70's, primarily to 'cost effectively' handle small theft or burglaries, basic vandalism and the like. It got its' kick start from auto claims in the early 70's. At that time, companies thought they were spinning their wheels on basic first and third party auto claims, with the never ending arguments over liability due to tort laws.

What do they do, they come out with a 'fault chart' agreement that 90% of the companies were signatories to that imposed a liability outcome; if the accident fell within one of about 12 general scenarios of the most common loss causes.

That one agreement did more to take 'adjusting' out of claims than anything I've seen since; until of course the advent of the PVC.

Therefore, the fault chart opened the evolution of the 'telephone adjuster'. As I said it spread to property claims a few years later; when companies saw the direct benefit to their operating expense factors. It resulted (even with quickly growing books of business) in a significant reduction in company cars and their related expenses, greatly reduced the need for IAs, and staffing needs were focused on the less expensive telephone adjuster than the staff (road) adjuster and the inherent reduction in salary costs that that acheived, etc; it is all dollar related.

The cyclical nature of this type of adjusting comes when companies expand the parameters of the 'TA adjusted claim; adding more perils of loss to the TA claim. Often, this stretching of the elastic goes on within one or more regions of a carrier, at times due to pressure put on a claims manager to reduce their department costs, or a zealous claims manager looking to get in stride with his / her upper authority figures.

The 'elastic' does snap back every one to three years, usually following a claims compliance audit of that region, or due to an underwriting audit that reveals a marked increase in average cost per claim, per peril, per $1000 coverage.

I do hope this gives you some hope that the example you gave, is in itself, not 'the future' of adjusting.

Ghost, I was sincerely concerned with your comments today. They are not in line with your normal colorful pointed observations. Put a little extra sugar in your java tonight and get some color back in your cheeks.

Me, you, us; will not become extinct for some time yet. Look at the popularity of dinosaurs today, likely 1 in 3 kids will get some replica of one under the tree next week.

All we have to do is adapt and improvise, along with redefining our professional image.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 6:03 pm:   

Oooh YEAH! Now this is the good news we've been waiting for, a total and complete abrogation of good faith claim service! Just a wild ass guess over the phone and WHAM, BAM, THANK YOU MA'AM, the check's in the mail. Over paid, under paid, why is it paid, who cares?

Yes, I will sleep better tonight.
Donita Taylor (Donilynn)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 5:02 pm:   

I just talked to my neighbor today. Here in East Texas over the weekend, we got somewhere between 6 and 7 inches of rain in about 24 hrs. Well, my neighber had a roof leak. Roof is only about 3 yrs old.

Called State Farm to get a claim started. Adjuster called back, took the info over the phone, approx. roof size, roof type, etc. Did some figuring, told him how much they were sending and hung up.

No one came and checked out the damage!!!! All was done over the phone. Is this the future of adjusting??? I sure hope not.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 1:24 pm:   

Since I'm already in a sour mood today, here's some more vitriol to add to the panic of this group pity party.

I recall about a year ago venting some steam over this topic. The same with the 'let's organize into a lynch mob' thread. Well, a year has come and gone and here we still are groaning and moaning over the same old gristle. As independent business men, (and women!), the brave new world order is kicking apart our bird nest on the ground, forcing us to fly away into different ventures. This little duck is always looking for a new way to survive. If your tree is being chopped down, I suggest you paint yourself blue polka dot and find a new tree.

Quality? Price? Loyalty? Maybe once apon a time in the good ol' days. This is the new Wal-mart world. If it ain't cheap and in a blue plastic bag, they don't want it. And, customer service? Why, all the Insured has to do is call this 800 number, 24 hours a day for instant professional service... (Hey! What's that in the sky? Is that our adjuster parachuting down to us not 30 seconds after we called?)

It seems to me that all my fellow dinosaurs out there have bad attitude about becoming extinct!
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 12:37 pm:   


BINGO!! BINGO!! BINGO!! You are right on the button and below are a couple of the posts that I put out over a year ago on this subject. Someone mentioned “bean counters.” They have always been there and will always be there. I was dealing with them in 1968 when I was on the staff for Allstate. They haven’t changed and they will not change. It’s always about money.

First Article
It has come to our attention that DDS has recently completed an estimating program for "contractors" to use. I have not seen it or know what it consists of, but it disturbs me very much that this company that has made its "nitch" off the backs of the adjuster is producing a program for contractors.

WHY? Because the independent adjuster is in direct competition with contractors. If you have to ask how, then you must have your head in the sand and not paying attention.

More and more carriers are using the DRP or Preferred Contractor program to "adjust" their claims for them. They say not, however, this is in fact just, what they are doing. The contractor is writing the damages for them and the carrier is determining coverage and paying the claim, based on the contractors estimate. Years ago this was considered to be like "turning the fox loose in the hen house." Now more of them are raising the limit that contractors can write. I know of one carrier that lets the contractor write up to $10,000.00. What does this do for your paycheck, if you were not given any claims below $10,000.00? Need I ask?

There a two reasons for this. Both have to do with money. One, the carrier does not have to pay for handling the claim by a staff person or independent. In most states, the carrier cannot pass on the "claims expense" to the consumer by a rate increase. No expense, no loss. It takes a long time for underwriting to find out that their severity goes out of sight, but who cares they get a rate increase based on severity, not expenses.

So, is DDS, who has and is making a fortune off independent adjusters, where they got their start, doing us favors? Hell, with their program and a little computer savvy, just about any contractor could replace us. I know, you say they don't know coverage, do you really think the carriers care? On the other hand, does DDS care that they are helping contractors take food out of our mouths?

Second Article
All of you have some great points, however, as I said before, I feel, that there are many who have their heads in the sand. I know the other programmers also have a contractor program to, but you seem to be missing the point. If you think that by being this close to the contractors and teaching them how to "handle" claims is not in direct competition with us, you are sadly mistaken.

I don't fault the companies like Simsol for making money, that’s why I said "Friend, Foe, or Just Money." The point that I was trying to make is that the easier that they make it for contractors to do our job the less we will get of the pie.

Jim Flynt probably hit the nail on the head though. It is really the quality of the job that is being done by some of us and the vendors that we work for that is turning the carriers away from using independent adjusters along with the expense factor that I stated in the opening remarks.

As recently, as this year I know of one vendor that had adjuster’s give as many as 20 files to roofing contractors and had them scope, photo, and diagram the losses for them. And we wonder why the carriers are using contractors to do our job. BEAM ME UP!!!!!!

All I am saying is we better wake up, start doing what we are paid to do, and try to weed out the people who are destroying our profession. Those of use that can and do provide a quality product will prevail in the end. I HOPE!

Jim Lakes RPA
Randy Gray
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 11:52 am:   

It is my opinion that we as adjusters and vendors must add something to the equation. That is "Value Added" with each and every adjustment we do. I mean "Adjustment", not an appraisal. It is what we do - or what we should do on each and every claim we receive. No matter what the schedule pays, etc. If we take the assignement, we should put in every ounce of professionalism in our product. It was mentioned that Preferred Vendors inflate the damages. I must also agree with this statement, as I have seen it in my recent past as a independent and also as a staff person. In saying that, I also must say we all should be sure we are writing our estimate to reflect the damages and not based off the fee schedule. I know that this has also happened in the past. Maybe no one on this thread, but I have seen it happen once the reinspection has been done and it became apparant that this was the case.

We have to "adjust" the claim, have superior customer service and focus and have that "Added Value" that no other "Perferred Repair Vendor" can compete with.

Dave is correct, the tide will turn, and it will turn again and again. Thanks for allowing me to have input.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 11:30 am:   

Thanks guys for the lesson on how the insurance business makes money. Not that we didn't already know that. I'm sorry if my post was a little too simplified for you guys. My point was if the insurance guys can get the job done and make a profit doing it and the customer is happy, that's the way they are going to do it. I guarantee that they get far fewer complaints when they use a preffered contractor than when they use adjusters. People don't like hearing the truth, such as, "Sorry, your basement flooding was caused by seapage of ground water and therefore isn't covered", or "No, there isn't anything wrong with your roof. The leak was caused by wind driven rain so we will pay for your ceiling and wall and floor, but we can't pay for your contents." People hate to hear that stuff, they pay premiums and they are tax payers and American citizens and veterans and they can't be treated this way. "I don't care what the policy says, that isn't what my agent told me I was buying, I know I'm covered."

If it costs an average of $500 more per claim but they don't have to pay an adjuster and they don't get any complaints, they are probably going to go that route. The bad times I was talking about was when interest rates are below 2% and the stock market is tanking and the income from investments can no longer cover losses from premiums, that's when they will tighten up and start looking at why the number of roofs being replaced has skyrocketed compared to roofs being repaired. Companies will always follow the path of least resistance. Is the additional profit worth the extra effort? Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't.
R.D. Hood (Dave)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 10:49 am:   

Clayton, As usual the "experience" of the older generation shows thru.

Perhaps we need to educate some as to the nuances of the Insurance Industry. There are (read carefully) TWO (2) items upon which the Industry depends for it's existance.

1) Premium Dollar. (This is the "cash flow" that allows the doors to remain open)

2) Reserve Account. (This is the account that ALL monies that MAY be paid on a claim must be placed into, (within 72 hr. by most State charters).

The continued existance of the carriers is based on the PROFIT/LOSS statement. Clayton is correct, it is rare that the difference of the "premium dollar vs. claims paid" will show a profit. That is not to say that the cariers will not and cannot apply for and in many cases receive an increase in premium sue to the "excess of claims dollars paid".

BUT,thats not the "rest of the story". Actually, it appears that the reserve account is a "NON REPORTABLE" income which reflects the real P&L statement.

Once upon a time, back in the 70's, I was a "Gold Seal Prefered Contractor" by one of the Big 3 Carriers, The inside deals, benefits, and perks were just as prevelant then as they are today.

After working "clean-up", investigating the DRP files, and rewriting them to reflect the true claim, it was appaling to me, that the carriers still allowed this, but very understanable.

You see, there are "allocated loss expenses" (Lawyers, contractors, experts) which can be deducted from the bottom line as expensed out items) and there are "unallocated loss expenses" (adjusting expenses, thats you and I and the Vendor)which are a reflection of the P&L.

As long as the "Bean Counters" rule, we will never make progress. The days of the adjuster controling the loss are long gone, as are the days of truthful, accurate and correct payment of claims.

Having been thru this cycle so many times, like a merry-go-round, it is doubtful that any surprises will surface. The Carriers will find out again, very soon, that they have let the "fox in the hen-house" and close the doors again. They will go to the "desk adjuster" (those all seeing-all knowing individuals with x-ray vision) and allow them to pay whatever they deem fit.

Then we have the alliances (sounds like Survivor) which are made between the Vendors & Contractor networks (FGS, PDS, & Prime come to mind) and other service oriented firms, which cut directly into our ability to bill and control the files

Will it ever go back to the right way, IMHO, doubtful, but possible.

Hang in there folks, someday, somewhere, someone, will pull the plug and a lot of people will spend some unwanted vacation time in a "very friendly atmosphere, IYGMM"
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 8:51 am:   

One of the amazing things about this business, we give out an open cheques, telephone adjuster with no questions, do everything we can to convince the insured that we will pay anything, then just when they get used to the idea that policies are designed so they can escape their deductible we accuse them of fruad. somewhere we have forgotten that an adjuster not only controls the claim, but (s)he also educates the insured. Meanwhile I have had more then one manager who vancationed in luxury thanks to the contractor with the open checkbook. Even know of a few that just happened to get there houses remodelled. The more things change the more they stay the same, and every few years they will remember that their is a benifit to having real adjusters.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2001 - 2:48 am:   

Kile, first I should state I am very anti (building)preferred contractor. Your windsheild story is typical. However, there is a large difference between the 'anticipated cost' and pricing structure of an item with a part number and that of a generic small water or fire damage claim.

When I was a claims manager, the Ivory Tower (HO)people pushed then forced the PVC arrangement / concept into my region, causing me to make the necessary 'deals' to initiate the program, at the time with a $5K limit. I thought then, and later proved (even with a 'trusted' building contractor before they became a PVC) that the system was akin to handling over our cheque book to the contractor.

Insured's were always happy - everything possible (and more) was done by the PVC to produce a 'happy result' for the insured. But at what price?

Post repair inspections and discussions with insureds clearly indicated we (the carrier) were being badly abused. Typical was carpet, where maybe one room needed replacement, the PVC did that and the hall (and more) or vise versa. Painting unnecessarily spread to too many rooms. Roof replacement was widespread as opposed to any consideration for repair. The examples could go on, and it was inherent in all PVCs; all of whom were previous 'trusted' contractors. The good part about it is that it gave me the ammunition to put an end to that type of PVC for building losses.

I fully support a PVC program for specific elements such as windsheilds and the like, and to a lesser degree for certain contents areas such as electronics. These types of items have a definite quantified structure and pricing.

A carrier can not / should not allow a building PVC to do as they please up to their assigned limits. What would I do, or you do, if our vendor gave us assignments with the caveat that detailed billing was not required on T&E files, for run of the mill losses - on fees up to $1000.?

Would not a 9.5 hour file @$60/hr end up closer to $700 or $800, if you did not have to account for what you did; other than doing what was necessary for an insured to say the adjuster was punctual, polite and fair?

With carriers embracing this notion of a building PVC, it has spread to 'natural disaster' claims; even if within the affected region they got 10% of the claims count - how many less files would we get or how many fewer of us would be called out?

There are things we can do about building PVCs. Insureds don't realize the situation the carrier, vendor or us are involved in regarding this issue. I grasp every opportunity to talk to an insured who have had the PVC 'treatment'. I want to hear about 'all the work' that was done, or how they were told not to worry about depreciation or their deductible - that it would be taken care of. It is these stories I want in my back pocket, to bring out every time I talk to a carrier claims person.

Concerning your statement about premiums exceeding claims; that is a rare breed in todays insurance marketplace. Underwriting profits are a thing of the past, the return is now from the investments. My wife has been a commercial underwriter for over 20 years and at least 10 of those with a performance bonus sytem predicated on the results of her book of business. Years ago the system kicked in at 95 or 96% loss ratio, and she still got some extra if the book ended up at 99.9% l/r. For the last 5 years the threshhold for loss ratio performance has risen to start at 101%, and she still gets a chunk when her results go up to 104.5%. Understand that means that if her book (in the millions$) looses only $1/$100 she gets a large bonus, falling to a small bonus when it looses $4.50/$100 of premium written. This is not unique, it is widespread throughout the underwriting world, and she works for the 2nd largest insurer in the world.

Finally, I again respectfully disagree with your 'good times / bad times' outlook concerning our usage vs a PVC, notwithstanding an 'Andrew' type event. This PVC we speak of will flourish in the 'tough times'. These 'tough times' result more often from a frequency of losses than they do shock (large) losses or Cat events. The carrier sees this as the 'all in one' package that carries no baggage (fee). We must do all we can to discourage carriers from the increasing usage of building PVCs.
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Tuesday, December 18, 2001 - 11:00 pm:   

I can understand the frustration that adjusters feel when they see companies going to direct repair contractors. I would like the work too. But let me tell you a story.

When I was on my way to St. Louis this past April to work the hail storm there, as I was driving through Jackson, Mississippi, a bolt flew up from the road hit the front of my hood and spidered the top of my windshield. After working the storm in St. Louis and then San Antonio I returned home to Baton Rouge and called my insurance company to get the claim settled so I could fix my truck. They said I could either take it to one of their claim centers and get an estimate and a check, or I could take it to a direct repair shop and have the work done there. Being that it was June and storms were firing everywhere, I wanted to get it done as quickly as possible and I recognized one of the shops on the list so I took it there. I had an estimate done on a Friday morning. They called me and told me the parts were in on Tuesday and asked me to bring it in. The shop even had arranged a rental truck for me and had it waiting at their shop. I dropped it off Tuesday afternoon, picked it up Monday and was on the road to my next assignment the following day. All I did was pay my deductible and they took care of the rest. I was totaly satisfied with the repair, it probably helped that I was acquainted with the shop and they knew I was an adjuster. The point is, however, I was totally satisfied. That is what the carriers are concerned about. Yeah, they want to keep claim costs in check, but they also want to make the insureds happy. If they can do both, then we can't fault them. After all, they aren't in the business of employing adjusters. They are in the business of collecting premiums and paying claims and as long as they can do that and the premium part exceeds the claim part and most of the customers are happy with it, that's the way they will do it.

There are situations when you need a more hands on approach. Natural disasters are a prime example. In the case of a hurricane or a large hail storm or ice storm you have thousands if not hundreds of thousands of insureds who have never filed a claim or dealt with a contractor and they feel a lot better when someone with a familliar company logo on their shirt shows up and points them in the right direction. That's where we come in. In the case of natural disasters it is more important to look good in the public eye than to save a few bucks on claims expense.

I don't think there is anything we can do about direct repair contractors. I think it will be a cyclical thing. When times are good the direct repair trend will grow. When times get tough, the carriers will realize that the fox is guarding the hen house and they will tighten up and use a third party, us.
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Tuesday, December 18, 2001 - 10:21 pm:   


I have been screaming this at the top of my lungs for several years. See my old posts on this subject.

Very little or no response was given when I stated that the Preferred Contractor was our biggest income risk and competitor.

But who am I, just another vendor and fellow adjuster that like everyone, has an opinion.

Wake up people before it is to late.

Jim Lakes RPA
National Catastrophe Director
RAC Adjustments, Inc.
R.D. Hood (Dave)
Posted on Tuesday, December 18, 2001 - 4:52 pm:   

Here is ONE of the issues we all face in this profession. How many masters can a company serve?

The company that offers us claim support via file storage, is also in the business of refering claims to a professional contractors network, (that leaves us out of the loop) and then they also feed other companies, which preform direct services, (again we are out of the loop).

Maybe you need to read this for yourself.

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