Mark in your calendar: October 24, 2023, at 2:45 pm CST. This is when the three insurance coverage firm commerce organizations stated one thing favorable about public insurance coverage adjusters in an Amicus Brief1 filed by Steve Badger on behalf of the American Property Casualty Insurance Association, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, and Insurance Council of Texas.
The amicus transient acknowledged partly:
A public insurance coverage adjuster is a legally acknowledged advocate for the policyholder. Texas insurance coverage firms usually work cooperatively with public insurance coverage adjusters to carry an amicable and immediate decision to claims. At instances there are disagreements between insurance coverage firms and public insurance coverage adjusters as to the precise scope of injury and value to restore. But as licensed and controlled professionals, most Texas public insurance coverage adjusters acknowledge and respect their fiduciary position in with the ability to act as a ‘claim advocate’ for Texas policyholders. They usually behave professionally and responsibly within the insurance coverage claims course of.
Amicus Curiae Texas Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (‘TAPIA’) offers an in depth historical past of how Texas public insurance coverage adjusters grew to become acknowledged declare advocates topic to regulation and licensing. Most necessary to this historical past is the truth that previous to the 2003 enactment of the general public adjuster licensing statute set forth at Chapter 4102 of the Texas Insurance Code, public adjusting was thought of to be the unauthorized observe of legislation… Prior to 2003, people performing at the moment as unregulated public insurance coverage adjusters confronted administrative motion for partaking within the unauthorized observe of legislation.
Since the enactment of Chapter 4102 in 2003, public insurance coverage adjusters have loved a slim carve-out from the laws regarding the unauthorized observe of legislation. This carve-out has allowed licensed public insurance coverage adjusters to symbolize Texas policyholders within the insurance coverage claims course of, conduct that in any other case can be thought of the observe of legislation. Without the enactment of Chapter 4102, any public insurance coverage adjuster representing policyholders within the Texas insurance coverage claims course of can be engaged in what has been discovered to represent the unauthorized observe of legislation.
This reality is vitally necessary in contemplating the impact of the Court’s choice on this matter.
A footnote to the transient supplied the next data:
There at the moment are 46 states that regulate public insurance coverage adjusters. Texas was an early state to acknowledge considerations about public insurance coverage adjusters partaking within the unauthorized observe of legislation, whereas acknowledging the necessity for licensed professionals to help insureds within the negotiation and adjusting of property injury claims. Public insurance coverage adjuster licensing strikes that stability. A current article demonstrates the necessity for this sort of licensure and regulation. See More States Adopting Professional Standards for Public Adjusters, Claims Journal, (May 15, 2023)…
The points have been mentioned in Update on the Texas Contractor vs. Unauthorized Practice of Public Adjusting Case, the place I acknowledged:
TDI and all departments of insurance coverage have an obligation to guard policyholders and the general public. The interpretation of insurance coverage coverage phrases, advantages which might be out there, and numerous authorized obligations of policyholders are advanced and important. Many of these points don’t have anything to do with the price of fixing a roof. Having credentialed people who’re consultants in these areas is definitely the enterprise of regulatory our bodies, and it’s within the public’s curiosity to forestall these with out these credentials from doubtlessly harming the general public.
Public adjusting and insurance coverage restoration development are each essential to the general public. The interaction between the 2 and the position of the regulator is what this case is about.
The transient is an unprecedented transfer by the insurance coverage business. I’m sure that this assertion will take many unexpectedly—particularly these within the realm of public insurance coverage adjusters. For the sake of equity and stability, it’s necessary to acknowledge and commend the insurance coverage business for this uncommon gesture.
Why is that this so important? Simply put, it’s arduous to recall a time when the insurance coverage business has overtly expressed something optimistic in regards to the position of public insurance coverage adjusters. This makes the assertion not simply shocking however a watershed second value noting.
Thought For The Day
Fairness will not be an angle. It’s knowledgeable talent that should be developed and exercised.