Multi-Peril Insurance: Dead for the Year?

Last Thursday, the National Underwriter contained a story of the unusual coalition that had developed in opposition to HR 3121. Matt Brady reports:

In a case of politics making strange bedfellows, J. Robert Hunter of the Consumer Federation of America and the Reinsurance Association of America have joined to oppose legislation expanding the National Flood Insurance Program.

Those that closely follow insurance issues know Mr. Hunter runs insurance issues for the Consumer Federation of America a non profit group composed of other consumer oriented non profits that speak with a single voice on issues they deem important. In this case the debate on HR 3121 and the CFA’s opposition derives from the intersection of environmentalism and insurance theory.

The basis for his opposition to plans to expand the NFIP, Mr. Hunter said, is that while it may sound like something that could help consumers, he believed it would instead likely only aid developers looking to build along the coast. Continue reading “Multi-Peril Insurance: Dead for the Year?”

More on the Ocean Springs Survey

Here is the Sun Herald story on the Ocean Springs survey. It adds some color not found in either the WLOX story or the Newswatch this Week Interview. I’ll add my own experience since Katrina is the loss of coastal residents is also the state’s loss as the overwhelming majority of re-locations which I am familiar involved moving to another state as borne out by resident Brigitte Bernhardt in the story.  Tennessee seems the destination of choice for those I know who have left.  The Sun Herald story:

Mayor Connie Moran said Friday that a survey of her city demonstrates how post-Hurricane Katrina insurance price increases, in some cases more than 200 percent, are financially crippling coastal residents and towns. Continue reading “More on the Ocean Springs Survey”

Mayor Connie Moran Interview on Wind Insurance and Resident Survey

At the end of February we wrote a post concerning a survey Ocean Springs Mayor Connie Moran was conducting on insurance issues. The survey is now complete and Mayor Moran was ready to talk about the disturbing results she received in the feedback. She noted on WLOX TV yesterday that Ocean Springs has issued only one commercial building permit so far in 2008 and placed the blame squarely on wind insurance as the reason. The interview runs around 8 and a half minutes and is well worth watching. Thanks to Cowboy for capturing the video early this morning for us on the repeat broadcast. It can be found at the bottom of this post.

WLOX also ran a companion news story Friday on their 5 PM broadcast.  Here is the link to that video reported by Patrice Clark.  Following is the print story found on the WLOX website.

Sky rocketing insurance rates are pushing many residents out of Ocean Springs. That news comes from a survey conducted by the city to learn more about residents’ post-Katrina insurance problems. Continue reading “Mayor Connie Moran Interview on Wind Insurance and Resident Survey”

Enterprise Award Winner Rebecca Mowbray on Claims Dumping

It was brought to my attention by our friend from Louisiana Mr Cominglatersooner that Rebecca Mowbray won the prestigious Enterprise Award given to recognize excellence in business journalism.

Rebecca Mowbray, a business writer for The Times-Picayune, has received an award from the leading organization for business journalists.

The Society of American Business Editors and Writers announced Thursday that Mowbray won an Enterprise Award, which recognizes stories that take a broad look at a trend or development. Her entry was “Same House, Same Repairs,” a story that examined how some insurance companies shift costs to the National Flood Insurance Program.

Indeed tracking down the original story “Same house. Same repairs. Same insurer. Why different prices?” and its reference to the Weiss case lead me all over the internet as the $2.8 million dollar verdict was seen as a stunning example of Katrina insurance bad faith. It also lead me to David Rossmiller’s Insurance turned Dickie Scruggs coverage blog and some of the most prime examples of why he is regarded as an insurance shill by lawyers that actually litigate wind-water cases and those of us actually located in Katrina ground zero. Continue reading “Enterprise Award Winner Rebecca Mowbray on Claims Dumping”

Louisiana Public Adjusters Qui Tam Suit Appeal (Updated)

One of the more interesting twists in our post Katrina insurance saga was the public adjusters suit filed in Louisiana against several insurers in May of last year which contained some very specific allegations of wind claims dumping on the National Flood Insurance Program.  Little did the public adjusters know at the time was that Dickie Scruggs has filed a similar suit under seal against many of the same insurers on behalf over several insured here on the coast and the Rigsby sisters.  At the time my very non-legal thought was the suits should be joined because they involved very similar issues but involved actions in two states, different kinds of flooding and the differing fact patterns that result from that.

Later we would find out in the world of Qui Tam that it is essentially first come, first served and since Mr Scruggs filed the first lawsuit, the Louisiana suit was dismissed.  Again my non legal mind had difficulties comprehending the logic involved in dismissing the Louisiana case which on it’s face involved different issues but my experience in the business world has taught me that logic and the law, while not mutually exclusive, also do not share space on the same page in the book of life. Continue reading “Louisiana Public Adjusters Qui Tam Suit Appeal (Updated)”

Eye of the Storm

I was looking at the Times Picayune early this morning and ran across this 25 minute video they put together.  I listened to it in the background while I made my rounds and I think our readers will enjoy watching it. This is their story of how they covered the aftermath of Katrina in New Orleans in those dark early days.

[googlevideo=http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3989911357450927172]

Around the GO Zone in 60 Seconds….

Busy doesn’t describe my office on March 28th of a typical year for us and this year is no different. Having finally fully restaffed last fall plus the increase in business leaves me with many options where to spend time such as quality control on the work product produced the staff (i.e. checking business and personal income tax returns), meeting and delivering my work product to my business clients or seeing the many business prospects that are still looking for a construction specialized CPA.

Yesterday deliveries and meetings took me from Columbia to Bay St Louis.  Today I run from Gulfport to Slidell and points in between. The time demands leave me right at 2 minutes to pen three or so posts on topics I find interesting. This missive is the gumbo post where I mix all the little items – hopefully into something good.

First stop is Jackson and the Clarion Ledger, where the very colorful and ineffective Mayor finds himself still cleaning up his messes from years ago. The foibles of Frank Melton normally would not darken the pages of this blog but it appears those he libeled tried to drag the Good Hands people into their suit filed against him by two people in law enforcement. Continue reading “Around the GO Zone in 60 Seconds….”

The Judicial Bribery Scandal Claims Another Victim: Will the Delaughter Suspension Be Truly Temporary?

This afternoon we learned from our friends at the Clarion Ledger that Judge Bobby Delaughter has acquiesed to a temporary suspension request by the Commission on Judicial Performance. The Jerry Mitchell story at the Clarion Ledger filed this afternoon stated in part:

The state Commission on Judicial Performance asked the state Supreme Court to temporarily remove DeLaughter from the bench until the commission could review two complaints filed against the judge.

The Justice Department’s Public Integrity Division is investigating DeLaughter and others in connection with allegations lawyers schemed to influence him to rule in favor of famed Mississippi lawyer Dickie Scruggs in 2006. Continue reading “The Judicial Bribery Scandal Claims Another Victim: Will the Delaughter Suspension Be Truly Temporary?”

Close call for Paul Prudhomme, Foodies Everywhere Almost Sent into Deep Mourning

I saw this in the Times Picayune. Tragedy almost stikes at the heart of New Orleans cuisine!

Noted New Orleans chef Paul Prudhomme was setting up his cooking tent on the practice range at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans around 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, when he felt a sting in his right arm right above his elbow

According to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, Prudhomme shook his clothing, and a .22 caliber bullet fell from his shirt to the ground. Continue reading “Close call for Paul Prudhomme, Foodies Everywhere Almost Sent into Deep Mourning”

Misdeeds at the Louisiana Windpool, Citizens Insurance

I have on occasion lamented the lack of transparency at the Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Association.  A visit to their website for example will not reveal the names of the governing board and very little else concerning their operations. What little I know comes from Commissioner Chaney and the occasional mention in the press.  You would think the powers that be behind insurance that costs so much yet pays so well would be proud to put their names behind the organization. I do know that David Treutel does not hide the fact he is on the windpool board. Dave, who hails from the supposed hotbed of anti-insurance land is a respected businessman and active member of the Bay-Waveland civic community. I can’t imagine he would object to being listed as a wind pool board member.

The lack of transparency has it’s bad effects.  Citizen’s insurance over in Louisiana similarly operated free from sunshine and in the dark for years.  It took a herculean effort on part of Legislative Auditor Steve Theriot to peel back the veil of secrecy to reveal what the premium dollars of the Louisiana insurance paying public was buying at Citizens. Continue reading “Misdeeds at the Louisiana Windpool, Citizens Insurance”