Xactware released Xactimate 27 Training Booklet/ Also has great discount on Xactimate 25 Training Book

April 30, 2010

 

Xactimate 27 Training Workbook

We are excited to have Xactware  as  a  renewal sponsor at  ClaimSmentor!

We are even happier to let our members know that Xactware has released an Xactimate 27 training manual at a very reasonable price for adjusters. What a great tool to have with you on the road for those late nights entering estimates after scoping catastrophe losses all day!

They also have their Xactimate 25 training booklet now discounted to $15.00!

Please be sure to use this link:

http://www.xactware.com/store/SelectProd.do?prodId=173&SFCID=70130000000Wy2z&LS=ClaimsMentor201005

 so they know you heard about it through ClaimSmentor postings! We’d sure appreciate it.


“Our Fathers Who Art in Heaven”..a tribute to our dads who have passed away….and Happy Father’s Day to all of our Members

June 21, 2009

Father’s Day 2009- in quiet reflection thinking about my dad who passed away in December of 2000 and missing him immensely.

While searching for good thoughts to reflect on his honor today, I ran across this blog entry by the author of ” Our Fathers who Art in Heaven” by Gerry Murak  and thought the story quite interesting. Also make sure to note on the right column of this entry that they are looking for contributors for Volume II by those reflecting on their great dads and contributions that they made in their lives. I hope you’ll take the time to read and share this with others missing their fathers today.

http://murak.blogs.com/ourfatherswhoartinheaven/2005/05/a_very_memorabl.html

My father was my best friend, mentor, cheer leader, and hero and I do miss him beyond belief not just today but every day.

 ClaimSmentor (see tribute on our About us page) was created and dedicated in his honor (William Robert Kane, Sr) as was the name Dimechimes which I use in my business and social networking sites. It represents the 10 of us in our family- how they ever raised 8 children on a limited military income is beyond me yet through my father and mother’s great hearts, the dimes we had did make a difference in the lives of others. My dad’s dimes have taken care of my mother very well since he passed away which he had often expressed was so important to him before he left us from diabetic complications just 3 short weeks after beginning kidney dialysis. ClaimSmentor was dedicated in his honor as my mentor, friend and best supporter.

We wish you all a very happy Father’s Day and hope you appreciate every single minute today with your fathers who are with you. Don’t ever take one minute, one conversation, or one piece of advice from them for granted. They are memories you will treasure forever.

To those in the claim industry who are out on assignment working the many hail storms across the midwest, we appreciate the sacrifice you are making to serve the insured public on their storm losses while missing today, Father’s Day 2009, with your families.

In Loving Memory of  William Robert Kane, Sr on Father’s Day 2009

The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.~ Henry Ward Beecher

 


Guest Blog by Ray Hauser of ClaimSmentor-Ray Shares His Personal Story in our “Luck Where Preparation Meets Opportunity Series”

March 17, 2009

 

 

Claims Education Magazine published my article in 2008   “Luck…where Preparation meets Opportunity”.

To continue with our strong recommendation that newly licensed adjusters seek reputable training opportunities that are recognized in our industry, Ray is a prime example of  what independent trainee adjusters are going through to get a foot in the door for adjusting assignments.

Here is Ray’s story on the long  journey post license to fill in the squares due to  insurance company and adjusting firm requirements before he can receive assignments. Ray, we appreciate your time contributing to this series of articles. I thoroughly enjoyed your participating in our January/February 50 Hour Fundamentals of Property adjusting course. 

This article link will also remain on our Guest Blog page above with all other entries by contributing bloggers. I do think it is important to highlight what those wanting a career in claims can expect  (from the independent side) and we have several interesting blogs by others when they were new in the field. If I asked Ray what he has spent thus far on licensing, rope and harness classes, and all of his other course fees plus transportation and lodging, I would guess he is in the 7,500 to 10K range. I see this regularly thus my push on looking for other sources for this education.

                  Getting Started in Adjusting by Ray Hauser

 

After I completed my 4 day licensing course I became aware very quickly that the process of finding work may be just a little harder than what I had expected. Many of my fellow course-mates fell by the wayside believing the task was next to impossible. Company after company stated on their websites that they required either a  4 year degree, or at least 2 years of experience, neither of which I had. Here I am, just a few months down the line, with a totally different perspective in terms of what it takes to find a job. What’s changed? Knowledge! The claims companies want knowledge, and they need to know you have the ability to settle a claim and leave the insured with a good experience. Knowledge and customer service drive this train! We adjusters have to understand that the claims companies are not going to hand out jobs to people with just a 4 day crash course in insurance and a 3 day course in Xactimate! That kind of knowledge is only the starting point. So the question becomes, “What else do I have to do, and where do I go to get it?” Of course it’s always beneficial if you start with some construction and customer service experience. I’m a new adjuster too, so believe me when I say “I don’t have all the answers”. But here’s my opinion.

 

First, you should register on web sites that offer information that can help you build your resume.

 

There’s no better place to go than to ClaimSmentor.  Here’s a website that’s a source of information not readily found anywhere else. Anything to do with insurance is found right here. The gal that runs it, Debbie Moroy (debbie@dimechimes.com), has dedicated her life to training new people. She started her career in 1973 with State Farm, and started the adjusting aspect of it over 26 years ago. Who better to learn from? Reading her resume is like reading a dictionary:

 

State Farm Basic, Intermediate, Commercial, and Management Schools. Vale Tech Residential Estimatics,Haag Roofing School, Georgia Arson Fraud School, many others too numerous to list. Have all 5 State Farm certifications to include wind, estimatics, commercial, earthquake, etc.. Have completed IIA, AIC, and 9 parts of CPCU.

 

Because of her reputation in the industry and the fact that she’s so well respected, and knows so many people after these many years, it’s my opinion that having her knowledge as your foundation in claims adjusting is absolutely paramount and priceless!

 

Once you’re registered on her site, you have access to up to the minute information on certification courses, other website links, insurance industry news bulletins, magazine articles, and far too many other items for me to list here. Everyone getting started should take her 50 hr Fundamentals of Property Claims course. In that course you’re taught : Contents Claim Handling Guidelines, Additional Living Expense Claim Handling, Condo Master and Condo Unit-owner Claims , File Documentation Requirements , Carrier Service Standard Expectations,  Insured/Agency Communications, and so much more. “ The class is designed to fill in major gaps of important things you need to know. The course does not cover the estimate software programs and scoping classes but concentrates on the majority of other things that are a must to know before you handle your first claim. You cannot go out in the field and “wing it” and learn as you go when dealing with consumers who have bought a policy expecting “above and beyond” service”.Then, you use the information from that course and on that website to move forward in your search for more certifications and courses.

 

Another very good idea is to get as many licenses from as many different states as you can. That way, if a hail storm hits Georgia, and you have a Non-Resident license for that state, you can be used to work the storm without having to wait for a state declared emergency. You become far more valuable to the claims companies than other adjusters only having one license from their State of Residency. Sircon is a great site for acquiring other licenses for a nominal fee. In most cases, another licensing test is not required.

If possible, pair up with another adjuster you’ve met at your local Claims Association or elsewhere, and mentor with them for a short time. 

 

Immediately after I got my license, Hurricane Ike hit the Gulf coast states. Everyone was in demand. I worked a number of claims for The Mission Group  in Beaumont, Texas. Fortunately, I had a great CEO with a lot of patience. I’d partnered up with somebody who had procured the job, but had about as much experience as I had. Ultimately, the number of mistakes we made was embarrassing. But Mr. Phil Spotts went into the training mode and demonstrated the finest managerial traits I’ve ever witnessed. To this day he’s still a hero of mine! Talk about performing under pressure by training a couple of newbies in the art of adjusting. It was a pleasure to witness, yet embarrassing to be a part of. 

 

Shortly thereafter, I joined a couple of other course-mates and proceeded to take a Two Story/ Steep Roof Rope and Harness course from Kevin Kramer  (k.squared@earthlink.net) in Montgomery, Texas ( great course!). Apparently, for those that have that certification, they’re the first to be called out and the last to leave because they can handle all roofs, not just the easy ones. Kevin also sells an OJT Training Manual that has lots of very good information in it concerning construction, scoping, roof calculations, roof pictorials, estimating interior damage etc etc. It’s a very good manual to have in your library when you’re trying to gain knowledge.

 

Another great manual to have is one published by Richard Beckner . He gives in depth details and step by step instructions in using Xactimate. It truly is geared for the adjuster having problems in using the software. It’s one of the best manuals I have. It can be accessed at: www.learnxactimate.com .

 

After my R & H course we proceeded to Pilot Catastrophe Services Inc. in Grande Prairie, Texas, hoping to acquire a successful evaluation, then 4 days of additional training in Allstate, Integriclaim, and NextGen.

 

 I’ve just completed a Citizens certification class in my search for a job in Daily Adjusting here in Florida, and I have 4 more certifications scheduled.

 

So, in summary, you need to have knowledge that you didn’t pick up on your licensing course. Knowledge like measuring roofs, replacing the shingles with the appropriate amount of waste rounded up to the nearest shingle bundle, replacing or repairing fencing…..depreciated or not depreciated? What are the important things you have to ask the insured when you’re making first contact and arranging an inspection? If you can’t answer these questions, you just need to take the appropriate training. It’s all out there. You just have to access it. 

 

Family members have asked, “Who will I work for?” The answer to me is obvious. I’ll work for anyone wise enough to hire me, because I’m going to be prepared by being ready to go to work, educated enough to do the job, and wise enough to only hand in great claims. I’ll get my local adjuster in town to preview my work if I have to. But my claims will absolutely be as good as anyone’s.  I am not going to be the first one to go home after a storm because of my shoddy work.  And hopefully, I’ll be one of the last ones working the storm!

 

           

Ray Hauser, Port Orange (Daytona Beach), Florida

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To View more information about independent adjuster Ray Hauser, you can view his Linkedin Profile here.

To Join our Claims Industry Group, you can view our Linkedin Profile here.

 

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Ray we thank you for sharing your story and also for your testimonial about the ClaimSmentor online claim mentor group. Deb

 

 


Visit all of our Claims Industry Sites for Claim Job Opportunities and Claims Training Needs- Join us today!

March 14, 2009

 What is ClaimSmentor- we offer claim training, claim staffing , claim job opportunities , and claim networking sites!

 Visit all of our Dimechimes Claim Staffing and Training and ClaimSmentor Social Networking and Claims Industry Services at the following sites. We invite all independent and staff employees of insurance companies to join us at the following websites. 

ClaimSmentor is proudly sponsored by Dimechimes Claim Staffing and Claim
Training
(emphasis is training  and claim consulting through the following social networking venues):

We hope you will visit all of our sites for your training,  employment needs, claims networking, or
staffing needs during 2009.

Make sure to read the announcement on the new
direction of our services made 3/1/09 at any of these websites listed below:

https://dimechimes.wordpress.com/2009/03/02/march-1-2009-annoucement-to-claimsmentor-and-dimechimes-claim-staffing-roster-members-change-in-claim-industry-services/
 
 

www.Dimechimes.com 

Our Claim Staffing and Adjuster Services website to include
resume preparation service, individual claim career coaching services, mock
interviews, popular claim industry links, and all contact us information for 
all sites. Reputable adjusting firms, insurance carriers, and claim recruiters join us!

 

www.dimechimes.wordpress.com

Our open blog on claim industry hot topics.
Includes guest blog entries submitted by our members and industry experts on the
Guest Blog link and our “Just One ClaimSmentor Moment” link for quick entries with
a link to a great news article or hot topic for days we just have no time for
forums or blog entries. You will also find links to all kinds of insurance
industry blogs, websites, estimate software, book reviews and much more. You can
search our archives by topic by using the Category tab in the right column. You
might also want to view the About Us page for links to articles we have had
published in major claims magazines. This blog was created for those who do not
enjoy learning through forum discussions or searching for information you might
need in claims.

www.linkedin.com/in/dimechimesclaimsmentor

Is our open Linkedin profile where
you can connect through our group to other claim industry professionals. We have
found it a valuable tool for adjusting firms and adjusters wanting to join in with
other Insurance Professional groups (click on Groups on the left column on my
profile) and make sure to also join our Dimechimes ClaimSmentor Insurance Claims
Group as well for other contacts. It is also a valuable place for adjusting
firms to announce job opportunities and to make contacts with key executives in
claims with carriers for marketing and for adjusters to complete their profiles
as well so that they too may join primary groups supporting the claims industry.
It is an extremely valuable tool and right now there is no charge to
participate.

www.ClaimSmentor.com is our online e-mentoring project for claim industry
members and vendors supporting our industry. ClaimSmentor is our forum
discussion site for hot topics in the claims field, headline new on current
claim litigation issues, links to valuable resources and free tools for
adjusters for organizing their claims inventory, for rosters for member
adjusting firms , and for our online Live classes held regularly. This includes
forums on carrier certification class schedule information, annual claim
conference information, adjusting firm seminars, career forums, policy forms and
endorsement forums, estimate software forums, and online training information.
We will be hosting our first field trips in 2009 for our members in territories
where we have a large number of members. We will be sharing our updated program
in approximately April 2009 with many new features for our members as well as
many new sponsorship opportunities for firms supporting our online mentor
project to work with independent adjusters to keep them updated on the industry
when they are in between assignments. This is a great site for those wishing to
network with members nationwide.  This is our only site that does require a login id.

Here is the link to join us!

We are now 1,010 members strong in our fourth year of networking. 
 

Social networking has become very popular in today’s environment and we hope
that all of these options to network with members of our groups in these
different venues will assist all of us in our claims industry to share
information.

We appreciate all of the participants in all of our various social networking
venues!


Just one ClaimSmentor Moment #3-Books We Have Recommended for Claims Adjusters

March 6, 2009

W e have 3 places that we have made recommendations for books for adjusters if you are looking for great material you can read between assignnments or if you are just breaking into the claims industry.

1) At ClaimSmentor in our “Training Materials” we have numerous links to catastrophe adjuster books recommended that we have had a few experienced adjusters review to see if they would recommend them for adjusters. There are about 4 great ones posted there specific to catastrophe estimating and scoping training.

2) Here at our Blog at www.dimechimes.wordpress.com  Just look down the right hand column and look for the Categories tab and drop down link and view the Book Reviews postings.

3) We now have linked to books at Amazon that we strongly recommend by well respected authors at AICPCU, Kevin Quinley’s Books, and Spencer Johnson’s books on dealing with work place relationships and change in the workplace. Here is a link to the recommendations over at our Linked in Claims Group you are welcome to join at www.linkedin.com/in/dimechimesclaimsmentor > Just click on this link to see the book recommendations through Amazon there.


Have License Ready To Go! Not So Quick- Take this Self Assessment Test

February 13, 2009

We receive hundreds of emails yearly if not monthly from new adjusters specifying they now have their adjuster’s license and are ready to go as they look for independent adjuster assignments. Many will have great backgrounds in construction, auto repair backgrounds, insurance agency, and other related fields.
 
What they do not have that they do not understand is a grasp on the functional essentials to properly adjust a claim. They may have learned state ethics requirements for adjusters, some basic policy to pass the adjuster’s license exam, but little regarding practical file requirements, carrier claim handling guidelines, forms required, proper communication tools and appropriate forms of communication.
 
If you think you are ready…try taking this self assessment and see how many questions you are comfortable with before you go out on assignments and see if you are ready!

Whether you take our 50 Hour Fundamentals of Claims Class or obtain training elsewhere, please do not go out on assignments without taking much needed training from PROFESSIONAL sources. We post them all in our Seminars Forum, our Training Material Forum, in industry Claim Conference postings all found right  on ClaimSmentor. See About page for all website/contact information.
 
This is not by any means a complete list of things you should know but just a 125 sample assessment test of SOME of the minimum things you should know before working property residential claims.
 
Career Self Test Questions:
 
1) What are pros and cons of being a staff adjuster versus an independent adjuster?
 
2) What different type of fee schedules are available for independents to work under?
 
3) What are typical fee splits between independent adjuster and adjusting firms?
 
4)  What parts of independent contract do you need to be careful about before signing?
 
5)  What equipment must you provide yourself to perform your required field adjusting duties?
 
6)  What information will you be given at an induction center meeting versus what you are expected to know at arrival?
 
7)  What things are you required to have on an adjuster’s resume? What format should you use if you are new to the field? If you are experienced?
 
8)  What are holdbacks on fee schedule payments?
 
9)  How much money do you need to deploy on a catastrophe assignment?
 
10)  When should you expect to receive your first fee payments once you start processing catastrophe files?
 
11) What are dress codes for adjusters as required by carriers?
 
12) What are expected hours at a catastrophe assignment?
 
13) What is the difference in pay for an inside adjuster versus a field adjuster?
 
14) What is the average annual income for an independent adjuster? For a staff adjuster trainee?
 
15) What career field options are available for you to pursue?
 
16) How much errors and omissions coverage is it recommended you carry? Should you furnish your own even if the independent adjusting firm offers to furnish it for a fee? Does your E and O cover your defense costs if a claim goes to suit and you are named in the lawsuit?
 
Adjuster Ethics Self Test Questions
 
17) Is it ok to take salvage from an insured?
 
18) Is it ok to take gifts from insureds, contractors, attorneys?
 
19) Is it ok to select a contractor for an insured or recommend a contractor?
 
20) Is it ok to meet a contractor over dinner to reconcile differences in your estimate?
 
21) Is it ok to use an assistant with you in the field who is not licensed to assist with the paper work and calls from insureds?
 
22) Is it ok to discourage an insured from filing an insurance department complaint?
 
23) Is it ok to discourage an insured from hiring an attorney or a public adjuster?
 
24 ) Is it ok to inspect a large group of claims and later write them up once you conclude your inspections?
 
25) Is it ok if you are using an assistant like a husband/wife team of independent adjusters for the non file assigned person to write the activity logs for the one assigned the file?
 
Dealing with insureds- Self Assessment Questions
 
26) What is the minimum time frame most carriers expect you to go by for first contact with insured?
 
27) When should insured expect a personal inspection once you have contacted them?
 
28) Can you accept lump sum estimates from insured?
 
29) When is it required you obtain original documents such as repair estimates from an insured vs copies? Why?
 
30) When is the appropriate time to get contents inventory forms to an insured?
 
31) Who are high profile insureds you should give priority treatment during a catastrophe assignment?
 
32) How do you determine who you should see first if you are assigned a large group of files on a catastrophe assignment when you arrive?
 
33) What is the appropriate way to zone your assignments if given this large number of new claims upon arrival at a catastrophe site?
 
34) What form should you review before ever calling the insured and what parts of this form are important?
 
35) If the insured wants to talk to your manager, what is your appropriate way to deal with this?
 
36) In addition to getting contents inventory forms to an insured immediately, what other forms should be given to the insured if the home is uninhabitable?
 
37) If the insured has damage under multiple coverages on a residential claim which one should you discuss with them first?
 
38) Where would you meet with an insured if the home is uninhabitable? How would you determine the amount of an advance they might need? What authorization can you give them for getting a hotel and eating meals out?
 
39) When is proof of ownership required on a contents claim?
 
40) What 4 items should you ask an insured for on each contents item claimed?
 
Carrier File Requirement Self Assessment
 
41) What 3 ratios does the carrier constantly monitor to see if you are meeting their time service requirements?
 
42) Do carriers allow you to use custom made forms such as your own excel contents sheet?
 
43) Do carriers allow you to use email to communicate with an insured?
 
44) Do independent adjusting firms allow you to communicate with the staff carrier claim manager or adjuster?
 
45) Which carriers are going to require you to get a carrier certification exam successfully passed before you can work their claims for an adjusting firm?
 
46) What language is required on all forms a carrier gives to an insured to sign?
 
47) Who keeps copies of all claim file documents and material..you or the carrier or both?
 
48) What do you do if you receive suit papers on a claim?
 
49) What is required if the carrier receives an insurance department complaint? What steps are you required to take?
 
50) How do you close out a claim if the insured withdraws the claim? What paperwork is required?
 
51) What should you do if a severity code is incorrect in the system on a claim? Who sets up the severity code? Why does it matter?
 
52) How do you establish a claim reserve? How often are you required to change the reserve? What coverages require a reserve? What is the appropriate manner to determine a reserve amount?
 
Dealing with Insurance Agents- Self Assessment
 
53) Are you required to keep the agent up to date with the status of the file?
 
54) Should an agent be copied on all letters to an insured?
 
55) If the insured has a complaint, should you inform the agent or is it none of the agent’s business since the claim was assigned to the claims department?
 
56) What contact is recommended with agency offices when you arrive at your assigned catastrophe department?
 
57) What is the appropriate thing to do if an agent tries to get you to inspect all of their storm losses before other claims?
 
58) Do claim payments affect an agents loss ratio for regular claims? For catastrophe claims?
 
59) When should you notify an agent of underwriting concerns such as maintenance issues? Who else should you notify?
 
60 ) What would you say to an insured that alleges “the agent should have told me that” or “the agent didn’t offer me that coverage”? What process would you have to follow to investigate that?
 
Attorney and Public Adjuster (PA) requirements-self assessment
 
61) What file documentation do you need if the insured advises you they have contracted with a PA before you talk to the PA about
the details of the claim?
 
62) Where do you go to check the rules the PA must abide by in a given state?
 
63) Is the contract the insured signs with a PA a contract with the insurer meaning the insurer must comply? Does the contract waive any rights the carrier has?
 
64) Can you still talk to the insured if they have a contract with a PA?
 
65) Can you ask for the insured to be present if they have a PA?
 
66) What duties does insured have with the carrier if they now have a PA involved in their claim?
 
67) Who pays the PA and how much is allowed?
 
68) Can you talk to an insured if they have hired an attorney?
 
69) Can you inspect a claim if the insured has an attorney without the attorney present?
 
70) What documentation do you need from an attorney if they call to say they are representing the insured?
 
71) Can you send a letter to an insured if they have an attorney?
 
72) Are you obligated to notify the agent if the insured has an attorney or a PA?
 
73) What do you do if you get a time demand letter from a PA? From an attorney?
 
Good Faith Claim handling- Self Assessment?
 
74) What are you required to do to be in compliance with good faith claim handling statutes?
 
75) What do you do if an insured, attorney, or PA accuses you of being in bad faith?
 
76) What are the top reasons for bad faith due to adjuster claim handling problems?
 
File requirements self assessments questions
 
77) What 2 things are used if a coverage question or questions becomes known by the adjuster? What is the name of the form? What is the name of the letter? When do you use each? Can you proceed with investigating the claim when there is a coverage issue?
 
78) What is the name of the report used on large losses, daily claims to summarize the details of the claim? When is it due in to carrier?
 
79) What is the name of the form used to summarize all recommended payments broken down by coverage ?
 
80) What are minimum activity log file requirements? What are the “no’s” or do’s and don’ts of creating an activity log? What entries are required to be on the log?
 
81) What is proper file order for building, contents, and additional living expense documents?
 
82) What is the proper name for each of the  electronic file documents required to be uploaded to a carrier claim file if they use a claim management system?
 
83) What do you do if approached in the field by an insured and their claim is NOT assigned to you? What does the carrier expect?
 
84) When is a Sworn Proof of Loss form required? Who completes it? When is it due?
 
85) What do you do if the insured does not want the mortgage company name of the claim payment? What policy provision do you show the insured?
 
86) What forms do you use if the insured requires appraisal? Can you demand appraisal? If so, what steps do you need to follow?
 
87) Are you required to go over the settlement with the insured  in person once you have finished your estimate?
 
88) How should your file be documented when you have items still pending on the claim?
 
89) What things do you have authority to authorize without the carriers permission when discussing claims with an insured?
 
90) How do you document your claim file if you disagree with instructions from your claim manager ?
 
91) What is the best method to approach your manager about questions you have on the claim? What information should you have with you before going to them? How should the file be documented?
 
Policy Coverage Assessment- Self Assessment
 
92) Who is responsible to get the policy to the insured, agent, attorney or pa when a request is received for a copy of the policy? Do you give them a sample policy from the carrier office or who and what kind of policy is sent to them?
 
93) What reference books are recommended to have out in the field with you for policy forms and endorsements?
 
94)  What forms and endorsements and policies should you always have with you in the field?
 
95) Is it necessary to quote policy language exactly when you deny a portion of the claim?
 
96) Are you familiar with state mandated form language? How about state mandated mediation programs and forms required to notify an insured of their rights? What dollar limit applies requiring you give the insured this information?
 
97) What policy language do you refer to if an insured asks for payment for their time completing inventory forms?
 
98) What do you do if an insured claims items not covered? Property for people not covered on their policy? What letters and forms are required? What policy language would you refer the insured to to discuss this?
 
99) What many questions must you ask an insured to determine the appropriate place for them if their home is uninhabitable? Is an apt needed, a rental house, and how do you assess this? Who is responsible to locate temporary living quarters? What are abatements on Additional living expense coverage and how do you apply them? Who covers their security deposits?
 
100 )Settlements- What provision in the policy explains ACV? What process do you follow to calculate ACV and to notify the insured of RC provisons and how they collect them? How long do they have to collect them?
 
101) How long does an insured have to file suit on a claim? What is the Statute called that applies to this time limit? Where do you find it for each state?
 
Estimatic Self Assessment Questions
 
102) What are carrier guidelines on matching issues?
 
103) How does the pair and set clause apply to contents losses? To building losses?
 
104) Is it acceptable to offer the insured an appearance allowance on a damaged building or contents item?
 
105) What are line of site issues when determining how far to scope on building interior damage?
 
106) What are carrier acceptable methods of determining minimum charges?
 
107) What are general guidelines for allowing for overhead and profit on an estimate?
 
108) Can you pay an insured 10% profit if they do the work themselves?
 
109) How do you detemine the appropriate depreciation for building components? For contents items?
 
110) Is it ok to enter contents items in a building estimate as a miscellaneous item? Why or why not?
 
111) What do you do if you are unable to scope a building damaged item? Is it ok to copy the contractors scope and insert it into your estimate?
 
112) What is the best method for reconciling differences in your scope with the contractors scope?
 
113) If the insured’s contractors estimate is lower than your estimate what do you do? Which is used for fee schedule billing purposes?
 
114) IS it ok to recommend contractors to insured? If so, under what circumstances?
 
115) When are you required to review prior losses to avoid duplication on your current damage estimate?
 
116) What do you do if you suspect the damage you are inspecting is intentional versus accidental? (Example- insured uses a hammer to create appearance of hail damage to roof)?
 
117) Is it ok to round up or down on measurements? Is it ok to use the contractors measurements?
 
118) What are the major reasons for scoping issues when reconciling your estimate to a contractors?
 
119) What trades is it generally acceptable to allow overhead and profit and which trades is it considered not acceptable?
 
120) Is it ok to override a price in an estimating program with a manual entry? If so, how should you document your file?
 
121 ) What estimating program do you need training on? Where is it best to acquire it? Do you need to learn multiple systems? What is the cost involved?
 
122) Should an estimate need to be revised after you’ve given it to the insured what do you do with the original estimate once you have rewritten it?
 
123) If you reject acceptance of a lump sum bid insured provides from a contractor, should you keep a copy in your file?
 
124) Name the company many firms use to send off material samples for flooring such as carpet and tile and the process to follow to submit the sample
 
125) Are you required to agree to a scope with a contractor the insured has NOT signed a contract with to do the work?
 
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We cover these topics and much more during our 10 sessions of Fundamentals of Property Adjusting class held online LIVE on Monday and Thursday evenings. We will also hold class during the day should we receive enough registrants requesting the day course.  Our next class starts March 2, 2009.  IF you take the above self assessment and find you need more training, please join us at ClaimSmentor today if you are not already a member to register for our upcoming class. Again this does not begin to cover what you need to know to properly handle claims but gives you a great idea of how much more training you do need in addition to acquiring an adjuster’s state license.

We will also be posting much information in the next week on other sources of training also available as online options as well as the best of the best field training options for those wishing to pursue a career as an independent adjuster.

It is most important you avoid classes held by instructors with little to no experience themselves. It is always utmost important that you learn from experienced personnel and that you ask about the qualifications of the instructor. I personally find it important that adjusters take classes from (at minimum ) folks with both staff and independent experience as they are much more familiar with what goes on from a staff claim management perspective regarding expectations to properly train you in carrier expectations versus possible minimally acceptable file standards that barely meet the muster of carrier file reviews.

I’ve been teaching our Fundamentals of Claims class for several years now with over 200 now processing through our class. I hear their stories and in many cases from adjusters who did go out on their first assignment during Katrina and or Ike who were not given good training and had not known how much there really was to learn only to get sent home and in some cases worse yet to be told they can no longer work claims for a carrier they had worked hard to establish a relationship with. Many assume that if they pass the carrier certification test which is usually on estimatics that they are good to go. Is what these trainees are missing is that the carrier also has high expectations that you already know other basic essentials like proper communication skills, forms, policy language ,etc which definitely is not the case for many sent out.

Is what I don’t like going on in our industry is that many books available and many classes are being hosted by some independent adjusters that have little to no practical experience themselves. It takes years  before one should even consider writing a book, hosting a course or other such classes.

It is really becoming an epidemic in the independent field with classes available if you just check around the classifieds and postings on many sites. We hope to direct you in future blog postings to reputable adjusting firms and classes hosted by some of the more professional vendors our members have found in their training path.

One of the fallouts we are seeing from this inexperience being passed on is that the trainers with little background do not understand the backlash  of some of the poor instructions being given out  and as such I do believe it is leading to the increase in claim litigation  due to  poor decisions and claim handling skills by newer adjusters improperly trained.

The very last thing you should want is to barely be acceptable and only to be assigned deployment opportunities when they’ve run out of adjusters with more professional claim handling skills. The better you are the longer you will be kept out on independent assignments, the less chance you have in being sued for bad faith claim handling activities, the more satisfied insureds will be with their claim handling experience thus reducing Insurance Department complaints,  and the happier the carrier will be with your work product!

 

**Sorry about the smilee faces showing up every time I use the number eight. Every time I use it is shows up when published as a smilee face. If anyone knows how to overcome that issue please let me know!


Upcoming ClaimSmentor Fundamentals of Claims Property Class Schedule for October, November 2008

October 12, 2008

 We continue to receive a large number of applicants for job opportunities from our staffing firm and new members on claim e-mentor site at ClaimSmentor who have nothing more than an adjuster’s license but no other practical training under their belt due to other obligations to current job assignments preventing them from attending field classes.

We have set up our schedule for online LIVE training classes which begin the last week of October and run through the first week of December as follows. You will find ClaimSmentor registration information below if you are not a current member to participate in these classes (the links below work only once you are registered by us on the ClaimSmentor site as a participant-the link to register is listed at the end of this blog )and to find complete course outline information in our forums about each course:

Next Contents Claim Handling Class– held Saturday October 25, 2008 from 9am to noon  CST held LIVE ONLINE at ClaimSmentor

Next Live ONLINE 40 hour Fundamentals of Property Claim Adjusting.

Held Monday and Thursday evenings on ClaimSmentor from 7-10pm CST November 3, 2008 through December 4, 2008

Next Two Night Live ONLINE Additional Living Expense Training Class held on Tuesday November 11, 2008 and Tuesday November 18, 2008 

Next Condo Master/Condo Unit Owner Claim Training Class– held live online on Saturday November 8, 2008 from 9am to noon CST

All classes include pre-class reading assignments and field self study guides and reading links for future field reference. 

These courses can be presented seperately to adjusting firm new members online or in the field. Email Debbie@Dimechimes.com for questions and pricing for field training or seperate online classes for your firm members customized to your training needs. 

ClaimSmentor members- to register for these courses,refer to our Training Roots and Wings Forum  for complete details on each class.

Be sure you reply to each topic in the forums to register for the class. The cost of each class is listed in the topic and are very minimally priced to cover our costs associated with distributing material, pre-class homework grading and course certificate preparation time. 

Should you know of additional new adjusters interested in these courses who are not yet members of ClaimSmentor, there is a link to the registration information so they can register to participate on the About page here on the blog.