Can a Public Adjuster Legally Solicit Clients?

The public adjuster is prohibited from directly or indirectly soliciting an insured person during the course of a loss-making event, as defined in the insured's insurance contract. This means that the answer to the question is “no”. Public adjusters cannot solicit lawsuits from attorneys, as this is illegal in all states and unethical for lawyers in all states to allow this to happen. Can an unlicensed person call potential customers who have recently suffered a loss, based on information obtained from newspaper articles or the Internet, and ask those customers if they want to schedule an appointment with a specific public adjuster with whom the unlicensed person is affiliated? Again, the answer is no.

According to Article 21 of the Insurance Act, a person who is not licensed may not engage in such activities without obtaining a license as a public adjuster. The definition of the term public adjuster includes a person who seeks claims on behalf of such public adjuster. The term solicitation is not specifically defined in the Insurance Act, but the Department defines it as a request for the purpose of receiving and taking action, striving to obtain by soliciting, and involves a personal request to a particular person to do a particular thing. Therefore, a person who is not licensed and involved in the activities described by the applicant would apply for claims within the meaning of Section 2101 (g) (and would have to obtain a license as a public adjuster in accordance with Article 21 of the Insurance Act). It should be noted that this opinion is limited to the factual situation specified in this document.

Nothing in this opinion would prohibit an unlicensed person from making appointments after the authorized public adjuster has already made initial contact with the prospective customer or in a situation where the prospective customer has initiated contact with the public adjuster. On behalf of an insured person and in order to obtain monetary or other compensation or anything of value, it is illegal for public adjusters to (A) prepare, document and submit a first-party property claim to an insurance company for loss or damage due to a hazard covered under a personal or commercial risk insurance policy, as defined in section 38a-663, issued by that company, or (B) negotiate, adjust or liquidate such claim; declare to the public for participating in the activities set out in subparagraphs (A) and (B) of the subdivision (of this section) as an enterprise. Attorneys who resolve client claims will not be considered public adjusters.(B) No public adjuster shall solicit between eight o'clock in the afternoon. Any employment contract of a public adjuster that results from solicitation between those hours will be void ab initio.(B) Any fee charged to an insured by a public adjuster shall be based solely on the amount of insurance settlement income actually received by the insured and will be collected by such public adjuster after the insured has received such income from the insurer. The public adjuster must advocate for the insured and not for a construction or roofing company that processes the claim. Ethical concerns about unethical solicitation, fee-sharing, non-practice of law when hired to provide non-legal services, and other ethical considerations of attorneys, and legal implications of public adjusters are quite difficult to manage and not violate.

If you have proof that public adjusters or lawyers are doing this, you now know what you can do to report violators. Public adjusters acting as “stoppers” are subject to criminal sanctions in virtually every state. The Florida Association of Public Insurance Adjusters and its leaders should be applauded for opposing these practices. The researcher says he is considering hiring people who set up appointments without a license to schedule appointments for his company's public adjusters. Appointment schedulers would ask prospective customers if they would like to schedule an appointment to meet with a licensed public adjuster. Never sign a “Benefit Assignment” (AOB) with the public adjuster or a contractor, as this takes away your rights to your claim and gives them to the person you assigned benefits. Becker is pleased to announce the launch of Association Adjusting, which exclusively serves community associations throughout Florida. I once told public adjusters in a speech that if they find a lawyer who requests it directly, call me and I will turn it into the Bar Association.

Independent adjusters must keep copies of each contract with an insurer or self-insurer and comply with record retention policies agreed upon in contracts. The following are some lesser-known rules you should know when hiring an accredited public adjuster who complies with state laws:.

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