What is the difference between an adjuster, an estimator and an appraiser?
This is a commonly confusing topic that Justin constantly has to clarify for people inside and outside of the insurance industry.
You would think it would be fairly simple to distinguish the difference but the insurance industry blurs the lines on this topic and fails to train their employees on the very important difference between these three positions.
Justin is setting the record straight today in an article he previously published on LinkedIn that we thought was worthy of posting here again on our site.
What can you expect from the new Carfax Total Loss Evaluation they just announced?
If you’re an insurance company or a dealer, then you can expect business as usual.
If you are the owner of a vehicle that has been totaled, then my guess is that you can expect nothing good from this new tool that is aimed at insurance companies.
Don’t be fooled; CARFAX is not going to provide private individuals with fair valuation reports on their car’s value.
Their announcement says the product will help ADJUSTERS that are considering total-loss claims. Yay, more help for adjusters and none for the victims, oh boy!
There are already total loss valuation companies that partner with insurance carriers and they have been, and / or are involved in class action lawsuits about the secret way they attempt to value vehicles (think CCC, or Mitchell) which many times results in a value that is much lower than what market information actually reflects.
The simple fact is that CARFAX is attempting to join the group of insurance partners who usurp authority on auto appraising. Keep in mind that CARFAX is not a vehicle valuation expert, nor are they an authority on auto appraisal methodology. They simply glean information about a vehicle’s history, and now they claim to have “History-Based Value” information.
The more one knows about Carfax and the more experience one has with Carfax, the less that person will trust them to give accurate results. Mark my words, the lack of transparency in valuation methodology will become increasingly evident as we see this new “CarfaxForClaims.com” portal take effect for adjusters.
My opinion is that it is just another way for insurance companies to pretend to be fair by partnering with a company that markets itself as consumer friendly (when it really isn’t). Look behind the big curtain in the corner folks.
Do you need help with a total loss? Is your claim against your own insurance company?
If so, we can help review and see if your case is a good candidate for invoking the appraisal clause. Fill out the form below today to get a FREE consultation with our experts on your claim!
Get ready for your mind to be blown in the latest article from Justin Petty regarding the Appraisal Clause and how much it can vary from policy to policy.
You will see four different versions of the appraisal clause and he’ll compare them and show you some of the differences/problems with them. He’ll also talk about how they work and how the clauses can sometimes be worded in a way that ultimately works AGAINST you, even though everyone normally assumes it was created to HELP you!
Read his opinion about these different appraisal clauses and how you might be able to deal with them if you are trying to resolve your total loss.
You might walk away with more questions than you had before – luckily, Justin is just the guy to point you in the right direction!
Sometimes, when you invoke the appraisal clause, the two appraisers get in a sticky situation where they don’t agree and one tries to make up unwritten rules on the idea of “that is what we have always done”.
This case was one of those.
The owner had been through a pretty horrific hail storm and his new vehicle was totaled in the process. When he got his offer, he felt like it was pretty low. We took a look and agreed that his valuation contained the typical problems they normally do and seemed to be several thousand dollars off.
If you’ve done some Googling because of a total loss dispute with your insurance company, you probably came across information explaining your right to appraisal (also called the invoking the Appraisal Clause).
Unfortunately, because auto total loss disputes are usually less than $10,000.00, it is an area that hasn’t traditionally attracted attorneys (but there are a few attorneys that will fight for you).
In fact, because the amounts in dispute are typically under $10,000.00, most insurance companies don’t even train their claims staff about the appraisal clause.
I was an adjuster for over a decade and NOT EVEN ONCE was the appraisal clause mentioned. If you invoke the appraisal clause, you can bet that you will be dealing with a claims representative that has no clue what they are doing (if you’re an adjuster that thinks you know better, prove it).
I educate adjusters and insurance carriers every week about this little known right that their insureds have.
Prove a point on your total loss due to flooding after Hurricane Harvey with the Appraisal Clause
If you’re a victim of the recent flooding in South Texas and have a total loss due to flooding with your carrier, you should call our office immediately and make sure that any offer you get is fair and reasonable.
Now that South Texas is dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and Florida and Georgia brace for the impact of category 5 Hurricane Irma, victims will undoubtedly be dealing with total loss claims in exponential numbers and they need to know that insurance companies routinely handle these claims in a very dogmatic manner.
The biggest tactic is for a carrier to simply refuse to negotiate.
They will simply tell you, “take it or leave it”.
They like to claim that they do not have the authority to negotiate outside of their captive company market reports.
OFFICIAL OFFER WAS OVER $7000 LOW ON A 2006 Dodge Ram 2500 SLT
It has been quite a while since we had time to post on our blog because we’ve spent our year so far helping tons of accident victims get a fair shake when dealing with diminished value and total losses.
We’ll start today with our latest success on a little known power you have against your own insurance company (1st party claim) if you have a total loss:
THE APPRAISAL CLAUSE!
Even if you know about the appraisal clause, it doesn’t mean it will be effective for you since most insurance companies have their own idea about how the appraisal clause works (even though it is in black and white in the contract) so you have to have an experienced expert that knows the rules and how to navigate the process legally.
We have inside knowledge that the appraisal clause is on top of everyone’s mind working inside the claims department because it is costing them a ton of money to defend the practices of their uneducated adjusters.
The requirement that appraisers and umpires be “disinterested” is something that the insurance companies purposely and habitually fail to recognize.
The two appraisers working the claim must be totally disinterested. Their concern should be about the TRUE VALUE of the loss.
It isn’t YOUR SIDE VS. THEIR SIDE. It is NO SIDE VS. NO SIDE!