, Resources for Adjusters from Adjusters
CAT Adjuster CO-OP Thoughts | Archive Index |

The Adjuster's Forum » General Discussion » CAT Adjuster CO-OP Thoughts « Previous Next »
Topics | Home | Current Forum | Jobs, Training and more | Adjuster Roster | Channels | Resources | Contact Us

Author Message
Posted on Friday, January 04, 2002 - 6:03 am:   

I had hoped and still hope that "no-one" would take my post totally wrong about Lakes and the ghost and the speech writer statement:
I refer you to his post dated Jan 03-2002, 9:34 a.m. , in which I refered to:
Again I reiterate my post on Jan 03-2002 at 8:54 p.m. Jan-03-02--9:54 am

Hey Ghost,

I wish you would give me a call. I could sure use a speech writer and you more than anyone I know have a way with words that just can’t be matched.

Between you and Wong Whey you guys keep me in tears. God I love this site. It is better than Saturday Night Live.

Jim Lakes RPA
Wayne Fortune
Posted on Friday, January 04, 2002 - 3:28 am:   

From working with and for Jim Lakes of RAC, I can promise you that he will give you his honest thoughts on a subject and not be afraid to put his name on his postings. I have learned that Jim's thoughts are well thought out and based on his knowledge and experience. By the way Jim, I don't think you need a speech writer, your make you thoughts very clear.

Wayne Fortune
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 11:00 pm:   


A jet lands - the pilot switches the engines off, but the whining sound continues.

How so?

Answer: The plane is full of cat adjusters.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 10:35 pm:   

And when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out into little stars,
And paste him in the sky,
And all the world shall fall in love with night,
And no one shall worship the garish sun.

Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 10:02 pm:   

Again, Ghost, KUDO's you hit the nail on the head, in your most usual gracious manner. No wonder lakes wants to be his speech writer.
alas, we drip with sadness as we approach the ending day.
Good Luck
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 9:30 pm:   

Tom & Russ, it seems that whenever a thread has reached its limit, we fall into the personal abuse and then the recriminations followed by the posts calling for censorship and a general disgust of the preceedings.

So, let us bid a fond fare thee well to the concepts of a Co-op and a CADO association. For truly, we poor pilgrims of aquired gypsy blood can only be independent birds of prey soaring on greenback feathered wings. For soothe, our only time to unite in common purpose is the feasting on 12000 files.

Adieu Co-op! Adios CADO Association! We hardly knew them. Sad, how sad, they knew not even the light of day...

So much for the lament. Now which one of you ner-do-wells spiked the punch at this wake?
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 9:12 pm:   

Well said Tom, I was waiting for guys to start bragging about the size of their beltbuckles. I sussect that for most of us, we get enough work to pay the bills bank a few $$$s and buy a couple of toys (every notice how many new pickups there are at a cat site). I hear rumors of guys making the big six figure incomes, closing 250 files a month, I've heard locker room rumors all my life, until I see the proof it's another urban myth.
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 8:54 pm:   

Just a remark that a little levity in life is better than the grief that some have shared in this thread. As usual and in the past, once a "good" idea is being discussed, someone does post, be braggardly (if thats a word) or anti, against or just down right insulting and almost a direct remark to the person that posted "something" along the lines they did not agree with.
Well, I for one say, heck with it, I will follow the posts, and laugh at the immature comments and go on about my business of trying to "increase" my career as to cat adjusting. If someone needs some assistance, I will try to help, if an idea is good, I will post in favor, only if I agree, If I disagree, I will not post anything.
I went back and reread some threads and it always seems that some band together and just try to enter the fray to start a fracas or to slam somebody or place some personal attack and you know what, its just not what I had in mind when reading these posts, you may continue as you are and I do believe that the carriers (well,hell,I know ) C.M.'s reading this "just" laugh at it and say, yeah, I want these guys on my next cat.I do not wish to be classified as a condemned adjuster just because I entered the fracas and expressed my opinion and some carrier/vendor read something into what I posted and said to to hell with me.
So Yes, I will continue to read and probably laugh at some and say frown at others.
But when you see my post, you will know that my sentiments are exactly what I mean and the way I feel.
I "do" hope each one has a great 2002 and that somehow we all can, yes, just get along. but more than that, let the vendors we work for and even more than them, the carriers, that some are professional and need this occupation to enjoy a good living and wish to continue in that fashion.
Now if you want to slam me or say anything to me, my email is listed and "I" (unlike others) would be happy to meet, greet, cuss, discuss or agree to disagree and as always it would only be IMHO. and "ONLY" in my humble opinion.
Have a great year and hope everybody goes to work soon.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 6:55 pm:   

Are the CO-OP thoughts for or against the idea?
Russ Doe
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 2:42 pm:   

I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would be in favor of CENSORSHIP on this site. Most of the Members and Sponsors are hard working Professionals that want a site that has a forum for exchanging ideas, information, and promoting a atmosphere that any member would feel comfortable sharing their thoughts on any subject. Healthy debate is must if this site is to grow and prosper. Healthy debate requires that both sides respect the opinions of the other side. Our trouble is, we don't know who's on the other side. If we CANT be responsible for what we post, we shouldn't be able to post!!! If we CANT follow the guidelines we shouldn't be able to post. If we WONT use our real names, we shouldn't be able to post!!! When you send your Membership check in, it will have a real name on it. Only those interested in making this site grow and prosper should be allowed to post. We need to move past the mindless postings and if censorship does it, I'm all for it!!
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 12:44 pm:   

Wong, I agree with you. Maybe we should ask J Lakes as he is one of the vendors with enough "cajones" to post here under his real name what he thinks in general about CADO and the CADO adjusters, including SAYITAINTSO. I think there are some pretty sharp people on this site that I would be proud to work a storm with any time.

By the way Lakes, I much prefer "Laugh In", you know sock it to me and all that.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 12:12 pm:   

Given the large number of carriers who read CADO and some of the posts being made here, is it any wonder so many of us are sitting at home and the carriers are using more staff, preferred contractors and telephone adjustments?

Given the braggadocio by some posters here, is it any wonder that everyone and their brother (and sister, Grandma, barber, waitress, paperboy, truck driver, and short order cook) wants to become a cat adjuster, thus diluting the pie for all of us? (While also serving to lower the professional image of cat adjusters with the same fell swoop!)

Are we our own worst enemy or what?

And some of you are wondering why everyone is sitting at home, worried, broke and feeling edgy and hopeless?

Isn't it past time for us to police our own and sanction irresponsible acts and words of braggarts? (Even the hospitals isolate and sanitize when there is a virus around which can harm or kill others)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 12:10 pm:   

In keeping with the wishes of THOUGHTFULLADJUSTER I will keep my post positive. Ok, ready ? Here goes. SAYITAINTSO, I am POSITIVE that you speak with a forked tongue.
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 10:05 am:   

Hey Wong, do they have a George Leonard's school of adjusting in the orient? I know of some who need to go get some credentials! Further, maybe some accounting classes, i.e., fee x claims - vendor cut - expenses = take home pay.
Be that as it may, please stop your scurrilous attacks on our fine American citizens. With snow up to your d-wang-doo, perhaps an ice dam or 2 is what you need to start the recapitulation of dollars for the year 2002.
As for Ghost,and his septic tank truck, Lakes hit the nail on the head, his posts are always the most gracious in his usual customary fashion, however, he does need to schedule a pick up for your dwung-dung,please schedule a time.
I am afraid that Lakes, like the rest of us, may have lost it as it appears again like the rest of us whom have not worked in a while, has cabin fever, if, and indeed, if, he thinks anything on this site is funny anymore.
Now, that this post has pissed people off I feel I should inject the following disclaimer.
All the above was posted in jest in order to ease the tension that somehow manages its ugly head upon this web page.
So for the year 2002, lets all just make posts of a "positive" note and be less critical of those that don't.
Ya'll take care now, ya here!!!
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 9:38 am:   

Hey Ghost,

I wish you would give me a call. I could sure use a speech writer and you more than anyone I know have a way with words that just can’t be matched.

Between you and Wong Whey you guys keep me in tears. God I love this site. It is better than Saturday Night Live.

Jim Lakes RPA
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 9:20 am:   

Hey, Wong Whey, your posts are getting better, less acrimony and more wit. Your response to the negative post was lengthy but remained palatable. Nice imagery with an oriental flavor. Less of a kamakazi and more of a long lance torpedo. You're getting there.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 8:40 am:   

You're right D.H.. I agree. It was a bunch of CRAP.

We need Ghostbuster's septic tank truck. And for more than one trip to the dump.
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 8:26 am:   

Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 8:22 am:   

O.K. Wong, you hit my button, I made 700K last year and that is true, only 600K was in stock market, I believe it was Enron, you need any I have plenty left over.O:}}
You know you must not know anything about 'THAT' kind of adjusting cause it appears to be easy to close 2000 claims,(it's called slam'em) however, getting paid for it is a real problem. Sounds like the guys that hit'em and then leave hoping to get 25% to 50% of their holdbacks
I, being a much gentler and kinder person than yourself and your wong-way thought process,can only say proof is in the pudding, Do You want any Enron or not. or yet, maybe we could get the CEO's of them to start out a vendor firm to help us. So that way knowing how to cook the books will not have to be learned.
Now, you lighten up, a stroke could be heading your way. It sorta reminds me of two adjusters both from same state drawing unemployment, one brags about how much more money he makes than the other.
Try to have a Nice Day
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 8:20 am:   

Since so many of us are snowed in around the country today, how about a snowball fight here today on CADO. Choose your team.
D Wong Whey (Dwongwhey)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 7:16 am:   

It Ain't So. There. I Said It.

I'm sure every other cat adjuster with any reasonable logic, common sense, and even the smallest iota of knowledge and experience with cat adjusting would heartily agree.

2,234 files in one year closed and not a single reopen?

In fact, do the math. 2,234 closed files in one year is impossible (except to an insecure person suffering some severe pathological tendencies).

$360,000.00 in one year, especially a storm year like last year? (Some of us were born at night. Just not last night)

Sold a one horse shop and made a "whopping amount" of money? (Wonder why he is still working if it was "whopping"?)

Doesn't have enough sense to know that just because you take in "500K" in a month, you could in fact have a LOSS rather than a profit? What you take in ONLY becomes a profit when it exceeds what you pay out. (Don't worry pal, you're not AWOL from NASA)

Made 18 grammatical and spelling errors in his post (according to my Spellchecker) and then satirically attacks OldTimer for 'doing no wrong.' (No doubt his claim reports reflect the same level of illiteracy?)

I have heard the story from more than one source about the young braggart from one of our southern border states who with very few years of experience (1) thinks he is Adjuster Numero Uno (2) had over 100 of his files reopen within one week of his leaving the storm (after only 2-3 months of deployment) (3) was handling AmFam claims on the AmFam schedule (4) bragged about making this kind of money to all his 'pals' and (5) then went out to Omaha to sell roofs (the 'real cat adjusters' were in Omaha adjusting claims and not selling roofs).

Is it me, or does it sound like the same person to you as well?


(You need a detailed road map for getting a LIFE Pal, so please let one of the REAL ADJUSTERS on this page know so one of us can loan you one of ours)

If any adjuster who reads or posts on this page were even half as good as this person claims, they would willingly and gladly post their name for all the world to see.

The reason "S.I.A.S." doesn't? He knows he would be uncovered as a fraud and publicly embarassed by his vendors and work associates as dishonest with regards to both his income and work product quality. To label himself an "adjuster" is to perpetuate a fraud by definition and an affront to the decency of all real adjusters.

The sooner WE rid this profession of JERKS like this, the sooner we will improve the image of catastrophe adjusters in the eyes of the public, the vendors and the carriers. And most importantly, even among ourselves.

Were this person to sit at the table with the better adjusters who post here on this page, he would quickly be shown to be the laughingstock of this profession.

It is not so much that this person is a LIAR. He also suffers serious delusional and self image problems. Out where I come from, we prefer to use the label INSANE.

In a few other places it's called letting your alligator mouth speak for your parakeet brain.

This guy would flock up a Chinese fire drill.
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 6:06 am:   

Most on this web site have their "own" business in some form. Yes it is run on a daily basis.And some of us have "owned" our on shop, some quite successful and "sold" to "major" independent firm ( made a whopping amount of money for a one horse shop with 2 adjusters) and some not. While smoking "my" wacky weed 'WHILE' working, oh,yeah, longer than you this year, unless you have worked from 01-01-01 till present.
You probably have to be directed by your vendor and probably again the only "one" you work for and to you they are your salvation and can do "no" wrong. Which incidentally, how much did you make this year, if it was over $ 360K talk to me, over 2234 claims closed in 2001. No re-opens!
If not read and take heed to these posts, which may help you in the upcoming year. Now that is over with to the real question.
If you do not believe that a influx of over 500K cash in a month would not result in a PROFIT,for any company, woe unto you, and you "do" not understand any aspects of business nor cash flow issues,nor marketing, nor apparent contracts. Most of these austitute field generals (professional catastrophe adjusters) posting here do realize this and have earned a good living in this business and now are "just" trying to garner some input that will result in a successful organization,operation,co-operation or something along those lines, that puts "more" money in the person we are talking abouts pocket and that is the person toting the load, "the catastrophe adjuster"!!
Now, eat your bran flakes call your vendor and ask if he can put you to work. Oh, yeah, tell him some old war stories about how you settled a $350,000.00 claim and you "saved" the carrier 200K with no help and that you will work for whatever deal he cuts as you don't care about what you are being paid or "how" much money the vendor makes off you, but you just want to work and break your back at $ 67.50 per file while the vendor gets the other $ 67.50. quite a deal for you isn't it?? Now that is quite an equasion, nobody even "oldtimers" wishes for that to happen to "us" and you and me, still are "us", and that my friend are "Catastrophe Adjusters", Who at present are upon hard times, carriers changing, vendors changing, NO WORK, families in jeopardy.
So yes, we post and we sound un-happy and malcontent, but we still are looking for one thing and that is "fair" pay for a "fair" days work.
Just some things to think about and each Catastrophe adjuster out there should be doing this, that is think about how to improve our situation !!!!
Wayne Fortune
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 3:46 am:   

A simple post for discussion seems to leave a person open to personal attacks when it should be a simple exchange of thoughts.

In the past when major corporations saw their profit margin fall, they cut marketing budget to increase profit margins. When the profit margin decreased again, additional cuts in marketing budget were made to increase the profit margins. But what is the purpose of marketing? The purpose of marketing is to sell a product or service. By cutting the marketing budget, you reduce the sales. The cat companies are our marketing department and the cat companies, just as IA, are in the industry to make a profit. Sales calls can be frustrating and expensive, many calls may have to be made before a sale is made. When times are slow, it is not time to cut marketing budgets, but rather a time to maintain marketing in order to have an "in" when times become hectic. Sales is not just to move a product, but it is also to develop of relationships in order to develop trust. We, as IA, need the cat companies, they are our marketing department.

Claims is a just a numbers game, quality is not important, preferred contractors. Look at the previous list, how could they be tied together? Yes there are cat companies who want only high numbers of claims. But who suffers from the numbers game? The insureds loss can be under paid (not fair to the insured) or over paid (not fair to the insurance company). Someone is not happy, so the preferred contractor concept appears. The insurance company says it might be the way to make sure that the insured is made whole. But the insured may feel that the insurance company is telling them who to use and the contractors are going to short them in order to keep the insurance company work. And we all know that no contractor would pad his estimate either just as there is not any adjusters who would turn in poor or a padded estimate.

It seems to be that some who want to have a co-op want it to be the only cat company, sounds like restriction of trade. If an insurance company becomes unhappy with the co-op, here comes the preferred contractors again.

Wait a second, what happens if the co-op becomes unhappy with you or you with the co-op? Where are you going to go?

We need the cat companies to market us and to handle admin, cat companies need us to "sell". The cat companies must have funds to operate and make a profit. Profit, did any one stop and think about the fact that the better fee schedule that the cat company can negotiate with the carrier that it increases their profit margins as wellas ours? The cat companies have a vested interest to get a good fee schedule BUT not so high as to price their product (us) out of the market place, if that happens here comes the preferred contractors.

You want to work, takes marketing. You want to prevent preferred contractors, quality not numbers.

Now before any one says anything, spell check was made for me.

Wayne Fortune
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Thursday, January 03, 2002 - 12:56 am:   

OK fellas. You're all spouting off great sounding ideas. It reminds me of the old Our Gang shows that I used to watch on Sunday mornings when I was a kid. Hey Spanky, we need to raise some money to pay for Petey's operation. I know, Darla, we can put on a show, whadya say, Alfalfa? Yeah, great idea Spanky. Buckwheat and I will sing a song, Froggy can tell jokes Darla can dance. Lets go fix up the old barn and pass out hand bills. Gollee gee it's gonna be swell.

Bottom line fellas is pure macroeconomics, supply and demand. Right now the supply of adjusters greatly exceeds the demand for same. Until that simple equation balances out or tips in our favor we are going to be sitting on the sidelines begging the coach to put us in. The fact is we are in a business that doesn't really lend itself to stirring up business, you can't create a buzz in catastrophe work, unless of course you are a PA with a nose for mold in Texas. Good luck in your endeavors, but until the demand curve catches up to the supply curve we will all be out in the cold.
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 11:18 pm:   

Some of you obviously have never started or run a business of any size. This is obvious by your post. I only hope the ones that think along the lines of "sayitso" never start a business that some of the others have the misfortune of working for. Sayitso, you must have been smoking wacky weed to make your statement below. I am starting to realize why some of you are not working. I will not bore you with the twenty or more basic costs of running a business as I am sure that the ones that understand already know what these costs are and the others who have their heads in the clouds would not understand. The most basic of all the considerations in running a Vendor Business is A PROFIT, which is probably a foreign concept to some of the austitute field generals posting here.
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 10:20 pm:   

give me 50 adjusters billing 25k per month their take and allow me to bill the carrier approx. 1 mil plus for the month and I will be o.k. come the second month.
Nowadays as I hear it (from good sources) bill every two weeks to a month. after the 1st bill or month they are then operating on the adjusters back or whatever they are billing.
a good return if you ask me.
i think it woul work but a earlier post said the deal, how loyal would adjusters be when it came time to be called out. hell, most will go just to get away from home, sometimes.
Russ doe
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 4:26 pm:   

At the CADO Convention last year I talked with Roy and Dave about forming a group of Adjusters. Here's my impression of that Group. The group would be a part of CADO. Roy & staff would be the Administrators of the site and oversee dispatching, training( Licensing,Certifications & continuing education), settling disputes, etc. It would be supported by (THE MEMBERS)which could include Vendors. I envision it being not only for Catastrophes, but also for regular business. Current membership includes Experts in all kinds of Adjusting and could be used by Vendors and Carriers to fit their Daily and Cat needs. I Dont believe a co-op the way alan suggests will work. We are too independent and trying to seat a board of directors would be impossible. CADO is already a viable force in the Adjusting community. The site is visited daily by Carriers, Vendors, Adjusters, and others in the Insurance industry.
I'm sure we could come up with a way to fund the site, Pay Roy's and staff's salary. Roy would be in charge and have input from a select commitee to iron out the way business will be conducted. Rules of the road. These are my thoughts. Looking forward to seeing a lot of the members at the Wind Conference. If you want a good price on a room call Holiday Inn main Gate East($55.night)and less that 2 miles to the Coronado Resort. Have a great day!!!Russ
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 1:05 pm:   

HELLO -------- Did I miss something? Did someone spread pixie dust on Alan Jackson? Alan, look at your fingernails, are they blue, are you suffering from oxygen depravation? Get real.
Jeff Goodman (Jgoodman)
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 1:01 pm:   

And the capital required will be significant.

If the CO-OP is to pay when the files are billed, it had better be able to front the payroll costs of all the adjusters for several weeks.

I have managed a vendor operation and it is often several weeks, sometimes months, until the claims handling fee is paid.

As the "Know Before You Go" doctrine states, the vendor should pay when the file is billed, not when the vendor is paid.

If the CO-OP fields 50 adjusters who bill twenty-five thousand a month their side, to front just the payroll for two weeks would be on the order of $625,000. That's quite a sum of cash. And it is only adjuster payroll, not rent for an office or support staff payroll. It is also why many of the small vendors HAVE to pay as the carriers pay them. Would our own CO-OP violate the "Know before you go" doctrine?

And hire your "Junk Yard Dog" early and set them loose. This is the person who, tenaciously, tracks down those claims the carriers are slow in paying. And there will be many claims that require tracking down. This is a tedious, frustrating task, and one in which most adjusters will not want to do. So who is going to not adjust and fulfill this position? Better make sure it is well paid, or anyone that has the option of adjusting, will adjust. But make it too well paid, and that 15-20% number starts not being enough. But make it too low paying, no one will do it, and it absolutely has to be done.

And I didn't mention the file review tasks, or handling the flood of insured calls that come into the CO-OP everyday. And the flood of carrier calls. People are required for these tasks, and adjusters typically will not take these jobs because they pay so much less than one can make adjusting. Anyone you teach to do these jobs soon realizes that they can make more money adjusting, and now you have even more adjusters with fewer support staff. Pay them in line with what an adjuster makes, and 15-20% of billing to cover costs is a joke.

These are tough problems and one every vendor, including the CO-OP, face. I do not put them hear to dissuade people from this idea, but to further define the scope of problems that need to be considered while progressing this idea.

There are only so many older adjusters who do not want to climb roofs any longer. And the ones that are around want to be paid like the adjusters they used to be, or at least close to it.

The solutions are expensive and time consuming to develop and implement, which is why they are not prevalent. The CO-OP would not be in a position to have custom technology solutions developed for them.

I have always thought that the solution to the degradation of the quality of cat adjusters was an adjuster association focusing on competence, continuing education and a strong sense of ethics. I just do not see this replacing the vendors.

I find this idea interesting and will continue to follow it closely and interject when I feel I can be helpful.

Jeff Goodman
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 8:48 am:   

1) A Co-Op is a corporation. The corporation is owned by the members. Thus, the corporation catches the liability.

2) A board of directors writes and approves the bylaws that goverens the Co-Op.

3) Board of directors hires a president who runs the Co-Op and makes the day to day decisions.

4) Memebers can take an assignment from anyone. They do not have to work for the Co-OP.

5) As a new start up, it may take up to three years to reach full deployment for the members.

6) Co-Op will be the most competitive vendor on the block as the vendor profit as been removed.

7) Of course any vendor can under bid any contract. Just as the Co-Op can under-bid.

8) Instead of worrying about the current vendors under cutting the Co-Op out of existance, they should worry about the Co-Op putting them out of existance. Vendor profit has been eliminated. Co-Op only requires actual cost and overhead to survive.

9) No plan or idea is fool proof. The members must put there trust in the Board of Directors (whom they elect).

10) When you go on assignment you answer to someone. Vendor or carrier supervisor will be with us always. This is the same with the CO-Op. You always answer to someone but, you have a stake in the outcome.

11) Last but not least, how many vendors will or have pushed testing and cont-ed as part of its workforce? Right off the bat we'll be more competitive as we have eliminated the vendor profit. Sounds like a selling point to me.

The above is just my opinion. We all know what they say about opinions.
Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 6:32 am:   

Here are a list of questions which were also sent to me by a CADO reader concerning a CO-OP. I post them here for anyone to address.


1) There are about 4 to 5,000 independent adjusters out there. Only about 10 to 20% of them would even be involved in the Co-op. How can you reach all of them and convince them that this is the way to go? There are hundreds if not thousand's that have never heard of CADO and some that have and couldn't care less.

2) Using 20% of that figure or 1,000, how many would actually turn down another vendor, if called to go to work? Less than 50%. If that were the case, what ramification does the Co-op have against that adjuster? NONE.

3) How many adjusters would give up a portion of their pay or be able to afford to, to pay an administrator and/or his help to run the Co-op?

4) Carriers will not hire a Co-op without someone accepting the liability of its workers. Who will accept that liability and at what cost?

5) Who and for what pay is someone going to oversee the adjusters work and product or are each adjuster going to turn in his own product? Moreover, who is going to pay that person when he or she could be making twice as much as an adjuster?

6) Do you think that you can hire the management personnel, marketing personnel, and all other staff needed to run the Co-op on the 10 to 20% that has been suggested?

7) As a sales promotion, what are the exact selling points that could be used to the carrier that would make them choose the Co-op rather than a vendor?

8) If the answer to (7) is price per claim, then what is the advantage to the adjuster? Remember there will be at least 2,500 adjusters out there that will not belong to the Co-op.

9) Who and at what cost, makes the decision as to who is called out when it is a smaller storm? Remember, there may be many years when there are limited storms and not everyone will be called upon to work.

10) Who is going to rate the adjusters, as some have suggested? Will they do it for free, or at what price to the adjuster?

11) Who is willing to kick in the money to get the Co-op started? This is like starting a business and who has the money to put in to get it off the ground?

These are some of the questions that must be answered. There are many more.

Jim Flynt (Jimflynt)
Posted on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 5:22 am:   

Enclosed is an email which I received from an experienced professional adjuster and CADO reader.

I'll share my own thoughts with you in another post.


I read the forum offerings on the CO-OP and find it interesting. The concept however does not take into account the existing vendors who would bid the CO-OP out of existence in the first year. Most of what I am seeing on the page is a dog chasing it's tail.

A couple of points:

1. We are profit centers. When we take an assignment we are bidding ourselves to the open marketplace. Pure and simple capitalism.

2. Is there room for another vendor? Call it a CO-OP or what you will, it will still be a vendor and subject to the restraints of the marketplace.

3. The existing Vendors buying the CO-OP out. A stock company can be controlled by the board, and I am seeing a trend that the board is going to be made up of those that are slinging the insults around.

In a fairy tale world we would all be happy, healthy and wealthy. The gut feeling I have about what I am reading on the page is not good. Maybe I am getting too old but something doesn't feel right about this one.

JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 10:02 pm:   

You asked and I forgot to respond.

You stated, “Jim feel free to offer any theories you may have otherwise if you can support them. Carriers tell me the reason they started staffing with CAT adjusters was because of the lack of value the CAT vendors were adding based on their cost and NOT the quality of the CAT adjusters themselves.”
This is exactly what I am saying and you don’t see it. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE DOLLAR. The auditors are saying that the quality (value) of the claims process is not justifying the expense of the vendors. In other words, for what they are paying out in claims expense to the vendors, they are NOT saving in claims severity. Since you are not in claims that is the average amount paid out for a loss per claim. Who controls the amount paid out? The adjuster. Point: paying a dollar where a dollar is due. Reason: QUALITY.

This is just one more reason that proves you are not on the claims side of this fight. Carriers are NOT adding to their Cat staff.
FACT: One of the top five carriers in the country started hiring Cat adjusters this past year and even moved into a new building, (six floors) and started a National Cat division. Guess what, December 1st they shut it down and laid off over 75 inside staff people. The company is now allowing the individual regions to hire whom they want to do their storm losses. Two other carriers are doing basically, the same thing. If you want to call me, I will tell you who the carriers are. They are not going that root because of the claims expense is much greater to have full time Cat people than hiring Cat vendors.

As far as working with carriers! I work with at least three to four on claims on a daily basis, every day.

I would be happy to discuss this issue with you, if you are interested, any time.

Jim Lakes RPA
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 7:01 pm:   

The snow and sleet are falling here in Baton Rouge as I write this. If this continues through the night as predicted, who knows what may happen. Let's keep our fingers crossed.
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 6:14 pm:   

To All,

John, thank you for your honest response. You and I have talked extensively about this subject and I believe that we think alike. And yes, there are vendors out there that do not care about the product that they put out as much as they care about the number of closed files. And thanks, you made my exact point. If everyone would just admit it, if we as adjusters would adjust each and every file based on its merits and adjusting it with quality in mind, instead of worrying about how quick we got to the next loss, we wouldn’t even be talking about this subject. Oh, by the way John Durham is one of those “Quality” adjusters that I refer to.

Gale, as I stated before, you have not been on the adjusting side and have not been an independent adjusting vendor and therefore are not aware of what it takes to be one. How can you make some of those statements unless you have been there and done that. I HAVE!! There are to many things to list that blows your statements out of the water. I.E. Liability, E&O, Marketing, Taxes, and on and on that carriers are interested in when dealing with vendors.

I take a very strong exception to your statement that I use warm bodies. YOU SHOW me the post that I made where I said that. I DO NOT use warm bodies and I am not interested in the number of claims that we turn VS the quality of the claims process. Adjusters like the one below, John Durham, and Jim Flynt, Russ Doe, and many others KNOW that when I talk about quality it is NOT just a marketing ploy as you suggest. I also have a question for you. How many claims have you adjusted and turned into a carrier that makes you qualified to say that carriers don’t care about quality?

And I will make one more statement to you. You don’t know me and you have never worked with me, so don’t say that I don’t care about adjusters and that I think the “poor adjusters, not being able to think for themselves would just starve to death without all of the CAT vendors and that some of them buy your line.” I think the majority of the adjusters on this site know who has the best interest of the adjuster at heart. This is not a personal thing, as you seem to want to make it. It is business and I have stated it many times that vendors NEED adjusters. As you stated, you do not have a dog in this fight, so why are you barking? Better still don’t answer that, it would just be another bark.

Alan, I was not trying to shut anything down. There are too many reasons why I do not believe that it would work and none of them are as you may think. If you have the time, I ask you or any adjuster to call me toll free and I will take the time to explain it to you, if you are interested. If you think that I am not honest, then I suggest you call one of the adjusters listed above.

I admire honest people and try to be as honest as possible every day. If most are honest with themselves here, they already know most of the reasons that I don’t think it would work and none of them have anything to do with it putting vendors out of business. Here’s the kicker. It would work if the organization stuck together and all adjusters would support it 100%. But how many of you believe that 100% of you would not jump ship when times were tuff and a vendor called to put them to work? Be honest!

Jim Lakes RPA
National Catastrophe Director
RAC Adjustments, Inc.
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 5:39 pm:   

Bottom Line:

Why should we support another IA company?
Its either we make the money or they make the money. If some IA was so caring, why haven't they approached us before?

The name of the game is faster, smarter and better. The Co-Op motivates us the adjusters to make a profit for us. Not some other IA. These other IA's want to keep the lions share for themselves. Thus, by elimanting their profit we become the masters of our own destiny.

Does anyone really think that it takes 40% for a vendor to keep their lights own. Personaly after 3 years, I see a 90%/10% spilt. After all the upstart cost are aborbed.

I believe this whole Co-Op thing is going to make the vendors stand up and take notice if and when any face to face organizational meetings take place. We are not worried about making the Co-Op (a profit) just the adjusters maximum return after overhead and expenses.

What could a Co-Op do if and when Cane season arrives?
R.D. Hood (Dave)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 4:58 pm:   

As Tom and others have mentioned, this has been discussed before, to no avail.

Perhaps this concept, formulated in a slightly different fashion may be acceptable.

WHAT IF, the CAOP supported certain IA Companies?

WHAT IF, these IA companies had the backing of the best of the best adjusters, committed, dedicated professionals who out-performed the norm?

WHAT IF, these IA companies, did the marketing, and then turned the whole deal over the to CAOP.

WHAT IF, the IA company received enough of the cut to keep them happy, the CAOP received enough of the cut to support the management and the Adjuster received enough of the cut to keep them well satisfied?

There is 100% to be shared, the question is what is fair and equitable for each? What will each party do and for what %? What are the costs for each?

It seems to be a simple mathmatical equasion. We all have certain fixed costs, and then we have the direct costs associated with the claim work.

The answer, my friends, is NOT blowing in the wind, it is a harmonious society, in which we all can have a reasonable and equitable share of the pie.

Anything that can be conceived by mankind can also be accomplished by them.
Tom Toll (Tom)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 3:49 pm:   

There are many hurdles that would have to be overcome, but a Co-Op is possible. I believe I and others mentioned this idea several years ago and it fell on deaf ears and some derogatory commentary.

An administration office would have to be established and some personnel to run the organization. That creates some overhead, but minimal. Marketing would have to be done and this could be accomplished by utilizing some retired adjusters who believe in this concept and believe in this industry. Some would be glad to do it for expenses and some light income.

Janice and I have been fortunate, in that, we have worked over 10 months this year and are working now. I like the vendor I do work for, as they always try to keep us busy and are fair to us in the income area. I applaude this particular vendor and certainly its manager.

Much discussion needs to take place before the co-op can exist. Conversation in real time, not on the internet. Volunteers????

I am in hopes that all may have a wonderful 2002 and a prosperous one. This is a profession, but quality work and continually self educating ones self is the answer. Never stop learning, ladies and gentlemen. The complacent do not work very long. Take pride in what you do and always give just a little extra to the vendor, company, and the insured.
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 12:38 pm:   

Alan, again, as it amazes me, I agree with your Proper assestment.
I am ready to fish.
I have had a great year last year and started 2002 off working, believe it or not a "hail" storm (carried over) but working.
However, the ideas you post are what I do at home anyway, when not working, I solicit claims of any type while at home. It will pay the bills.
Slow and Steady and stiched together right will make it a prosperous operation.
alan jackson (Ajackson)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 11:19 am:   

Screened Adjusters
Tested Adjusters - Test and results will be forwarded to carrier.
A.I.C. every adjuster must have one or be enrolled in some type of continuing ed. One AIC course a year.(Great Marketing Tool)

In a matter of three years we will be more educated than anyone else out there. We will be the number 1 vendor in the country. I saw where one of the vendors made a post saying this would not work. It took less than 24 hours before a vendor saw the idea and tried to shut it down. I wonder why? Could it be because we might cut into their 40% profit margin and cost them some bucks.

If you do not like the Co-Op idea, then you do not have to be a part of it or work for it. However, 3 years from now this will be the big show in town.

Our computer software vendors can help us with setting up our paperless transfer and Website.

We can market everyday claims as well with a paperless setup. Members are all over the country.
I suggest that the (Everyday Division) solicit overflow casualty work, auto appr etc.. This can only help our cat division.

We also need to establish Mold Adjusting guidelines and a mold education division. As mold hits other states the carriers will need mold adjusters who know whats going on.

Think big. Its time to fish or cut bait. Lets go fishing.
Clayton Carr (Clayton)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 10:59 am:   

Ghost, why couldn't a "CA Co-op" do some of the things you advocate as imperative to our survival? As this entity, why wouldn't it have one or more committees to identify, address and pro-actively be involved in 'betterment' issues; relative to the concerns you raise and that many of us share to some degree?

The "CA Co-op" creates the vehicle that will allow us to drive our own destiny. Its' concept will allow us to seek out work in a competetive marketplace, with a revenue splitting arrangement far more favorable than currently available. It will allow us to control, through member classifications and professional standards; the proper assignment of work to the adequately qualified member.

It is common for 'Co-ops' to have a voice in the industry they service. That cooperative voice, whether it's agribiz, pure financial services, or insurance; has been a trusted and respected element of society for generations.

Gale's comparison of the vendor within Sam Walton's world really is a great comparison. In fact, much of that has gone on in our industry in the last 15-20 years. The evolution of the 'preferred vendor' was in part due to the inefficiency of service providors to the carrier - the ma and pa shops (whether autobody or building / contents restoration) that would not / could not adapt and advance with the technologies and attitudes implemented / required by the carriers.

A CA Co-op would allow us to evolve past a critical dependency on "CAT" claims work. A sufficiently subscribed Co-op creates a North American network, widespread beyond just major metro centres.

Why couldn't this Co-op, in time, develop into a multi service risk management organization, with claims as its' core, but not sole function? There are many outsourced functions that we could, in time, absorb into our portfolio of expertise.

Ghost, please reflect on my opening comments / questions. Although your concerns are not addressed by the creation of a Co-op, can you see the "CA Co-op" as becoming the medium in which your concerns are elevated and worked upon?
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 9:01 am:   

No, Gale, we do need the vendors. It wasn't just that rolladex that got Walter Pilot those stacks of files, it was his audacity, courage, and salesmanship that carried the day. Today we call that marketing skills, something that you use constantly to keep your boat afloat.

The vendors we are aligned with provide that most important commodity, a marketing and payroll department for us. That is why they are worth every cent of their cut of the invoice. To unilaterally discount their contribution is a fatal error.

Sure, the carriers would love to cut out the vendors. That would provide them with just that more control over us little disposable people.

Remember, united we stand, divided we fall.
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 4:04 am:   

Well this is interesting and revealing. :)

One can quickly see the leaders and the followers. I have actually went back to reread my post after your last post Jim because I was interested in what theory I may have put forward but I did not find one. As for a 15% gross margin covering a vendor’s expense I did not indicate that but questioned of it could even be done for a 20% gross margin. Jim if you feel that the carriers would not be interested in a pool of self-policed, experienced Cat adjusters to augment their staff that would be financially motivated to give guidance to the new recruits then you must not be dealing with any carriers on a one on one bases.

Jim guess where Sam Walton would have looked to instantly reduce claims handling cost by 35 to 40% right up front if he had been in the insurance business instead of the retail business. Yes it is a fact that CAT adjusters are not the endanger specie but the vendors that can’t get their overhead in line with the new reality in the world of claims handling will become history over time.

Based on your own post I think I remember you stating that sometimes your firm has to go the warm body route. Is there any question in any reader’s mind that your use of the term “QUALITY” is nothing more than a smoke screen for the most part? Yes it sounds good in your marketing efforts but it is clear from other posts that “CLOSE, CLOSE, CLOSE” is what carriers are looking for and at the lowest price possible.

Perhaps your apparent view that most adjusters can’t make it without vendors to “manage” them is true but I do question your view of the ability of adjusters. I do agree with you that the vendors are dead meat without adjusters to ante up with a 35 to 40% of their earning.

I am willing to bet you know if the carriers had a pool of a few hundred experienced CAT adjusters at their call to augment their staff that many of them would not have the time of day for CAT vendors. I can see your reason for thinking the poor adjusters, not being able to think for themselves would just starve to death without all of the CAT vendors and that some of them buy your line.

Sam Walton has indirectly proven the CAT vendors are the useless glands on the belly of bore hogs, not the CAT adjusters if any party is less useful then the other. Personally I do not have a dog in this fight and have the advantage over you in seeing what carriers are looking for since my income is not affected regardless of where the CAT adjusters take a interest in having direct input into their future or not.

I do know vendors selling their services to the carriers are in for a surprise if they think the future is going to be the same as the past. The number of carriers will be reduced by 30%+ of the next several years and the vendors will decrease by 70% due to the lower cost structure of the virtual based adjusting firms coming on board. Jim feel free to offer any theories you may have otherwise if you can support them. Carriers tell me the reason they started staffing with CAT adjusters was because of the lack of value the CAT vendors were adding based on their cost and NOT the quality of the CAT adjusters themselves.

Is the CAT adjusters’ main problem that in slow times they are signed up with agents that can’t produce? This overall has been a very good year for the IA’s across the country based on the number that renewed PowerClaim for up to 5 years in December even up to one year early so their small adjusting software cost will be put against 2001’s higher than normal incomes.
Posted on Tuesday, January 01, 2002 - 3:14 am:   

Ghost, we need you to post your resume and tell us what vendors you have worked for the past 5 years! two reasons, one is for the fee schedule that you will give us and then that way we can use your expertise and fruitful knowledge in re: to the cat adjusting business only. \
Most cat adjusters could care less about the loss ratio or all that jive. I am not being smart, I want the other adjusters to see what,who,where we alll have worked so they can realize what this business is about. This is no way a reflection on you or anthing like that, I am just using you as you have posted primarily against this idea. Now lets get down to birthing.
The real deal is this, no matter what is put out there for the current cat adjuster to think,or even maybe go for, there are persons who will not abide by the suggestion that, YES , there is something that 'could' be better for the adjuster and the vendor and guess what maybe even the carrier.
Yes, I have slayed the dragons, and to start a "new" vendor or "co-op" or whatever, "IF" I have the work, pay the proper amount that a adjuster is worth, and provide the carrier with a "quality, time proven product" then I will prevail. OR the co-op will prevail.
All the carriers want is this: a good quality product that will suffice for settlement of the claim presented.
Jim, for the record, 200 claims at 200 per file is $40,000.00. adjusters gets $34,000.00 and co-op garners $ 6000.00. 200 claims 8 adjusters is 25 for the week. Now 6 K a week gross profit is not bad, for this: phone call to cat adjuster, follow up that cat adjuster is on site, rec'd faxes from adjusters, process claim payment sheet and submit to carrier for payment. Then send adjusters check out (in a timely fashion) Total cost is less than 100.00 dollarsl. No an "independent" firm cannot operate on 15 % gross profit, but a co-op can, due to the expense factor.
Now, as usual the discords and others will disagree, however, if given the opportunity, I would jump at the chance to provide the services of cat adjusters to a storm and recieve payment for thier services and then forward a check to them for what their percentage is. I promise, I can make money and "SO" can the "CO-OP". IMHO ! !

but now its 2002 and we should be going ahead and doing something about "WHY" good cat adjusters are not working "NOW".
I am sure that there are carriers that would like to have a few adjusters to do some work as in daily work.
Now lets put our heads together and go forward as one and quit telling everybody that reads this site how smart we are about the premium accounting rules,etc that mean dowakadoo to all of us.
Please comments in the fashion of Lets"go for it" are welcome. O;}}}}}
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 9:28 pm:   

You're right, Kile, idle hands are the devils workshop. What we are fussing over are issues that have been thrust apon us by the zealots in the carriers home offices that see claims departments as expensive mammaries on a boar hog.

By changing the aforementioned accounting rule and thru legislative lobbying efforts creating protective laws for our well being, we can turn back the hands of time and then, we will only have to contend with the weather gods to send work our way.

To do so, a unifying organization must be birthed. That is my position in this tempest.
John Durham (Johnd)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 9:28 pm:   

Messr Lakes
While I agree with you that in General QUALITY is our most important product, I respectfully submit to you that this is not always the case. I have worked for you and feel that I know what you want, just as what the others want that I have also worked for in the past year. Unfortunately, some other vendors are NOT interested in quality.

While I salute you for your interest and integrity in dealing with adjusters, you must realize others are not of the same stripe. I have had files sent back with a notation, "this is way more that we want, if we give them this they will come to expect it from now on."

One company I worked for told me eye to eye; "I dont care what the files look like I just want files closed...closed...closed...closed."

A close friend of mine who works for Big Red has told me he has tried to see just how "crappy" (as in bad) a file he could turn in without getting it back and to date never has had a file returned but is one of the first called because he can close files.

Another company I worked for told me they didnt really care because they "got the same fees on each re-open and just assigned the re-opens to another adjuster."

Gale may be right about the cost(s) involved and poor return rates to carriers. One must think, where are they going to make up the losses (assuming a loss can ever be recovered) and what can they do to stop future losses.

Previous post to this site have mentioned the antiquated accounting rule that does not allow carriers to recover the cost of adjusting in their rate increases or re-insurance costs. This rule could (should) be changed. Only because of this rule have the carriers gone to the PVC program(s) to try and negate the adjusting fees and increase their percieved bottom line.

I also blame some of the vendors for cutting the rates in an attempt to undercut their competition and gain more business. Some of these vendors are currently "employing" some of the very adjusters that have a hard time coming in out of the rain.

Mr. Lakes, I know you want quality, and I also know you are aware of these marginal adjusters who you would not employ. So, quality is not the only consideration in play in this dilema.

John Durham
Kile Anderson (Kileanderson)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 9:15 pm:   

I don't know about everyone else, but I don't see this as a problem with vendors, I'm very happy with my vendor, or carriers, I have no complaints about the carriers I've worked for, or prefered contractors, when a cat happens they will still need cat adjusters. I don't understand the whole problem with fee bills, I only worked 4 months this year and I still made way more than I used to when I worked 50 weeks a year in a traditional job.

The simple truth is, there hasn't been all that much work to go around. There hasn't been a hurricane in over 2 years, no major earthquakes since Northridge. With the exception of a few hail storms, an ice storm at this time last year and a very rainy, slow moving tropical storm, the pickings have been slim since 1999. I think if we are all honest with ourselves we will realize that no matter what kind of organization you work for, if there is no work there is no work. Hopefully for all of us this bout of frozen precip will create another ice storm like Arkansas had last January only over a larger area so there will be more claims and that will lead to an active spring followed by a couple of landfalling hurricanes. This is what will make us all happy. The majority of the people in this field are in it for one reason, we love to work HARD. When we aren't working hard we feel like we aren't in control of our own destiny. I know that I want nothing more than to work, work, work. That day will come. Hopefully soon.
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 8:56 pm:   

Well Ghost, it looks like more than pickle juice was poured in that pudding.

PROBLEM: Too many vendors bidding with the carriers for their business.

SOLUTION: Start a CO-OP (another vendor) so more competition can help us all.

Pretty soon when folks think of an oxymoron, they will think "Adjuster Intelligence" not "Military Intelligence."

This is kind of like getting a whipping with a barb wire switch !

This is just IMHO
JimLakes (Jimlakes)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 8:56 pm:   

Ghost and All,

I hate to enter this fray, but can’t help but make a couple of comments.

Ghostbuster is right on. It will not work. I am not saying this from a vendor standpoint but as someone that who has been a staff adjuster, quality control representative on home office staff for a major carrier, preferred contractor for several carriers, independent adjuster, and now, Cat director for a vendor. The key phrase you stated was that the vendor “protect our function.” How many times have I stated that vendors NEED independent adjusters and could not survive without them just like independent adjusters NEED vendors. People, it is like a bird with no wings or a wallpaper hanger without any arms.

Gale, I know that your intentions are good, but I totally disagree with your theory. What you are saying is, that a vendor can operate on a 15% GROSS PROFIT. It is obvious that you have never been in a vendors shoes doing insurance claims. If you or anyone else think that an independent adjusting firm can operate, survive and make a profit on that amount then I want to sell you one. See the number below. And, if you think that a insurance carrier would sit up and take notice that a few hundred independent adjusters were forming a co-op after reading some of the CADO comments made by many, then you don’t know much about carriers either.

I’ve said it many times; the problem is “QUALITY.” Unions, Co-op’s, or whatever will not cure our woes, just like certifications, licensing, or designations will not make a “quality” adjuster. It may help, but like courage, providing a quality product has to come from within. Most everyone can learn how, but doing it is something that each and every adjuster has to make up their mind that they are going to do.

Here’s hoping we all have a Happy and Prosperous New Year.

Jim Lakes RPA
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 8:51 pm:   

Please, folks, these dreams of plum pudding and roast beef on a cold winters night are just that, pipe dreams. Imagery of a fatter fee bill share is a fog that masks the reality of the crisis at hand. Has the approved contractor shop been only a bad dream? Is the accounting rule precluding claim expense from premium rate setting a mere spector of the night to be gone with the dawn? Will tomorrows sun reveal a new reality with a return to the good ol' days?

Not on my street and not on yours. You wanta be a vendor? Fine...but ya might wanta slay some dragons first before ya rescue the fair maiden. And those dragons are the ones we've outlined here in these discussions. This Twilight Zone is for real and won't fade when we awake.
mark (Olderthendirt)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 8:50 pm:   

Let's take this one step further. Vendors ae tired of warm bodies who cannot adjust. With a co-op members need to sign an agrement (profesional agrement?) that allows to discipline or even remove the incompetent. I think most of us have been to a storm where someone is sent home for not being able to tie their shoe, and next storm they are back. Members should agree to help with training. Also at least two levels of membership ie full member who has invested and shares in profits and associate members . But, if we can sell the idea that the team we can put on the ground is competent we have a marketing tool.
TheMANwith the PLAN
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 8:30 pm:   

Well Ghost, I hope you have a Happy New Year too !!! I also hope you jump on board and participate, with your knowledge and expertise, it would be helpful.
Now that the kiss up is out of the way, I think it will work, it depends on who,and how they (us) prescribe to the work ethic and how well we put it together. If you or anyone else thinks Pilot, GAB,Brush,Worley,Crawford,etc are in a position to say they can put X on the ground in 24 hours, I believe from "who" I know personally, and "IF" I personally guaranteed the payments, that I could put as many as any on the ground in 24 hours, of course, I would not need 35 to 40 % to do that and yes, even you with guaranteed money would jump on board if YOUR cut was more than any others and the same amount or more of claims.
Ha, I finally said it, Yes we can do it and we probably should, but as a realist, I know that we "you" or anyone else gets the call they are going where they think the best deal is. PERIOD.
Now thats my Opinion and humble as it is, I think it is pretty correct. Just think, how many people "YOU" or any of us out there could put "your" friends/adjusters (good ones) on the ground in 24 hours. I think that is the answer.And if the amount of money for the adjuster was "MORE" then after 1st storm, I would have more knocking on my door. Just look at how some vendors got started.Again IMHO, thats how to do it. Of course, with the help of CADO and the backing of all the members on CADO, then the out front jump would be tremendous. Think on these things.

Have a Happy New Year and So Very prosperous.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 7:27 pm:   

By the way, the story I heard came from a Big Red NATCAT supervisor who was there that day at the New Orleans hurricane. Walter Pilot sauntered into the Big Red storm office armed with not much else than a purloined rolladex from Crawford & Co. filled with adjusters names and last known phone numbers. Walter said he could put a bunch of adjusters on the ground in 24 hours. The Big Red honcho took one look at the huge stacks of unassigned files and said OK. That was the start of Pilot Catastrophe Service. Being at the right place, at the right time, with someone elses assets, i.e. the rolladex.

That's the story as I heard it.

Ya see, the only real assets a vendor has is each of us on that rolladex. For us to remain an asset and also for the vendor to maintain that asset is to protect our function. Our function, nothing else matters. We must remain an asset to the industry and not be negated by the 'cost saving' stunts of the carriers. Excessive loss ratios are a direct result of skimping on the claims department. Too few cats always means the rats get fat. We are NOT to blame for lack of underwriting profit. The fault lies squarely on the heads of the honchos with the reserved parking places at the home office.
Ghostbuster (Ghostbuster)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 7:12 pm:   

Goody, Goody, Goody! It's my turn to pour the Pickle juice in the pudding!

A Co-op? Why would starting up another vendor be a help? Does it address the approved contractor crisis? Does it address the need for legislative lobbying to protect the adjusting industry? How about some sort of recognition and/or certification program?

Nope...just another vendor beating the bushes for a handful of files. No fangs, no claws, no courage. Just another vendor. And, just what the already over crowded market place needs, more competition! Oh, yeah...the carriers are now shivering in their hand made Italian loafers at the thought of the CADO Co-op.

How's that for being a sour puss?
Gale Hawkins (Gale)
Posted on Monday, December 31, 2001 - 6:12 pm:   

The CO-OP idea can work. Starting up a CAT firm I would think would take a lot of effort and money but being employee owned should offer some marketing leverage with the carriers. Perhaps someone that has successfully run a CAT firm in the recent past could be tapped by the Board of Directors to run the field operations. If a few carrier management types could be convinced to be on the board it would add credibility and be a plus for the marketing efforts.

Will adjusters be willing to work long enough for peanuts to see this become a reality? Folks check around with current CAT firms and ask them how many years it took for them to get paid what their staff was making. How many CADO members/readers can afford not to go when their long-standing vendor calls so they can wait of a CO-OP call?

Can the marketing skills be found to make this happen could be the hardest question to answer? If the right storm could be caught at the get-go it would make success a lot easier. I was told that the late Mr. Pilot was called upon perhaps by State Farm when he was a very small firm to handle a very large CAT and he told them he could not handle it cash flow wise so they sent him $2 million dollars.

If there is any truth to that story it could open the door for some front money from a carrier with a need that liked the CO-OP idea. Fee wise I would not want to give away one’s services but to expect to make the rates of a temp ER doctor or that of a lawyer might not be realist. Adjusters are like so many other professions, including the MD’s fees that are being trimmed. Do you know any doctors with a $40 office visit rate that discount it to $32 if an insurance carrier is involved?

A CO-OP might not increase one’s income a great deal but it could help insure the Profession remains viable. If marketed correctly I think a CO-OP could help find placement for the experienced adjusters that can no longer hit the roofs for one reason or another. I bet some IA’s that could go for Social Security would sell out if they could be fairly sure of 2-4 months a year inside examining files or over seeing telephone adjusters.

Just like the fat margins in adjusting software are going the way of the dinosaurs so are the fat margins associated with the industry. You may ask, “Gale why do you say that?” Because the carriers I talk with are running 110% to 140% loss ratios at this time. Folks when they do not have fat margins then we that feed off of them will NOT have fat margins either. Just ask members of their boards of directors the next chance you get. Also ask them what they think of a CO-OP for CAT adjusters. I bet there would be some interest. Manning a booth at the PLRB which is a CO-OP owned by 30 carriers would be a good chance to meet the suits needed to buy into the CAT adjuster CO-OP idea.

Topics | Home | Current Forum | The Classifieds | Adjuster Roster | Channels | Resources | Contact Us