Contesting Depreciation Michael White asked 9 months ago
Contesting Depreciation

I’m looking for help countering their insurance companies use of Xactimate for what that software says is the life of an item.

Some of the life of items they say are objectively absurd (like a picture frame lasting 5 years) and we countered on what we said was a reasonable life of an item. Nationwide’s contents reviewers response was “I am not at liberty to change the system life given to items.”

How can we best dispute very low lifetimes of items to reduce the depreciation they gave?

2 Answers
Chris Rockers Chris Rockers Expert answered 9 months ago

There are a number of factors to be considered by insurance company representatives in attempting to apply accurate/supported depreciation. The age of a possession is but one of the factors – but age is often the only factor considered by insurance companies in its initial ACV determination – certainly if determined by a software program (like XactContents). The quality of each possession – the condition of each possession – the care given to each possession – and the use of each possession are all to be considered. These factors are to be shared with the carrier in support of lower depreciation percentages. Carrier reps typically enter information provided into the software/database and automatically capture the “condition” as average. Carrier reps are to consider credible, supporting information provided by insureds in efforts to adjust the loss and reach agreement not only on the RCV but the ACV as well. There is not a set formula to be relied upon – and revisions can/should be made if excessive depreciation was applied. Depreciation applied to possessions of a couple with no children or pets should be different than depreciation applied to possessions of a family of four with a pet. Rarely should possessions be depreciated more than 50%. If your possessions were in excellent or very good condition – were well-cared for – if some were properly stored/maintained – if some were rarely used – share this type of information in writing with Nationwide and request a meeting with a local rep to address all questioned entries. Good Luck.

Answer for Contesting Depreciation Carolyn Winter answered 9 months ago

We also have some guidance on our website on this topic. You might be interested in reading Home Inventory and Contents Claim Tips and watching our webinar Contents Intensive and Collecting Depreciation.