Adjuster says claim closed– But we haven’t even started work!!! s.french asked 4 months ago
Adjuster says claim closed– But we haven’t even started work!!!

I had damage to my structure- roof and exterior walls- from a tree that was struck by lightning struck and then thrown atop my house in the CZU-Lightning Complex events Aug 16, 2020. I have had ongoing delays with the Santa Clara County Building Department regarding any permit issuance due to no fault of my own. I am still currently unable to yet know the full extent of requirements/code/ordinance upgrades that need to be met prior to my being issued any permit for any repairs. (Only minor hazard mitigation work to prevent further damage has been completed- and the house is braced up from the outside.)

Last January, the Farmers agent first sent out an unqualified (non-structural) engineer to evaluate loss. I documented all the errors and omissions of their engineer’s report, and rejected it for use with my Claim. We then agreed that the Adjuster would come out at later date when we had additional information, and a qualified engineer or architect on-site for evaluation, and answer any questions of the Claims Adjuster so to properly update their estimates. I have made requests to extend all my policy deadlines (including right to file suit) due to Building Dept delays, and requested that Farmer’s make their site visit. The Claims adjuster has not yet complied. The adjuster writes that my Claim was closed in February because they issued a check based upon their estimate of repairs. Each time Farmers issued a letter stating that my Claim was closed, I responded with a firm statement that the Claim was NOT closed! We are still in the investigation stage! HELP! What do I do next? They did not extend the deadlines requested.

1 Answers
Stacy Tucker Stacy Tucker Expert answered 3 months ago

That is a frustrating position for anyone. If Farmers is refusing to re-open your claim to continue the investigation, you have a few options. You can hire a public adjuster, which may get their attention and get them to re-engage in the investigation. You can file a complaint with the Department of Insurance. The Department of Insurance cannot force Farmers to reopen your claim, but they will require Farmers to explain to them why they have not done so. You can hire your own engineer to provide an estimate for repairs to challenge the amount Farmers believes it will cost, and submit that to Farmers. If Farmers is stating that it closed the claim because it paid their estimate of repairs, then it might not re-open it until you provide documentation that their estimate is incorrect. If all else fails, you can contact an attorney.