This is breaking news folks and I will have more but for now click below to get the full 13 page decision, hot of the press. Its accountability time for State Farm and that is gonna cost the Rust family some big money:
The bottom line is “Trailer lawyers” > than State Farm’s lawyers.
The answer to that question is pretty clear to me, the folks that elected Congressmen Steve Scalise, Bill Cassidy and John Flemming that flooded out in Louisiana should practice what they preach and not get a dime of federal help. By extension, since Mississippi’s fluffer Congressman Steven Palazzo also voted to deny Federal Aid to Superstorm Sandy victims the same would apply here in Mississippi the next time a hurricane hits the coast right?
A Long Island engineering company and one of its former executives were charged on Monday in a scheme to minimize insurance payments to homeowners whose residences were damaged by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
I reckon Nielsen and the rest of the gang has got a sharp eye peeled on this latest turn of events. After Katrina the DoJ, then under President Bushie, preferred not to take on any large campaign contributors insurance companies, even if they defrauded the taxpayers. That really has not changed under Obama with the development of the twin legal theories in “too big to fail” and “too big to jail” so the New York AG’s referral of other potential criminal acts to the US DoJ is certain to die on the vine. Continue reading “Those that dealt with insurers and their pet engineering firms after Katrina can certainly relate”
Breaking news this AM on twitter folks. Look for State Farm to do well in what has been a very favorable venue for them so the case is bound to die there. After all, the NFIP ratepayers are really a bunch of freeloaders and all 5,206,241 of you don’t equal up to one member of the Rust family let alone State Farm in the eyes of the Supreme Court.
Finally for those that missed it last week we have this from PBS and our own Magnum:
As I observed on Twitter, time for Ru$ty to part with $ome corporate ca$h. Hopefully it will be put to good use cutting that pesky NFIP deficit the insurers caused by their illicit post Katrina claims handling processes.
About the time that 60 minutes report ran Slabbed began receiving reports of layoffs at Nielsen, Carter and Treas as our own Magnum looks to be the one staggering out of the ring victorious in this legal slug fest. If the courts in the northeast re-visit the issue of Plaintiff’s attorney fees then the victory becomes complete.
Make no mistake folks, the battle ground is in the northeast but this is a good ol’ fashioned Louisiana blood feud. I’ll continue to follow this story, updating as time allows.
In light of recent allegations that some insurers in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) may have denied or rejected Superstorm Sandy flood damage claims based on falsified reports, the Federal Emergency Management Agency is now prepared to reopen “every flood insurance claim” filed by Sandy victims, officials announced.
As someone in the industry who has represented liberty mutual on dozens of their cases it is with certainty that I can say they are the worst slimeballs in the industry second only to State Farm. I have heard their newbie adjusters tell elderly insureds they did not have a claim despite having lost their teeth and fractures to their jaws from slipping on wet floors that had been mopped in dark rooms. I have seen them deny claims that were clearly covered. I have seen them justify and defend cheating beneficiaries of their benefits and I have seen them cheat their own employees.
State Farm just had another reorg and guess who got cut. All of the employees from Mississippi who had to defend Eds Russ and Lecky’s decisions to cheat policyholders. That is how they rewarded their loyal senior staff. It was sad that the local adjusters managers and agents got the shaft for Ed and lecky’s unscrupulous behavior.
Additional vital background can be found here and more recently here.
Of course the problem down here wasn’t that the National Flood Program was too generous to its policyholders, no siree. The NFIP was too generous to the WYO insurers that dumped their wind claims on the Flood Program.
I’d like to acknowledge the recent care packages that I’ve received and thank those of you that sent them. I thought the pictures of Billy Hewes were a hoot. On that topic I will only say that I will not be running the pictures though I do appreciate the nice person spending the time to get them to me.
Hurricane Sandy litigation is heating up and I need to see about getting Nowdy back in one way shape or form to cover the litigation because it has a local bent and it is getting nasty:
William Treas of the Metairie law firm of Nielsen Carter and Treas is a defendant in the suit. Nielsen Carter and Treas are the primary law firm for the National Flood Insurance program. The litigation after Hurricane Katrina here including the Louisiana based whistle blower suit Ex Rel Branch featured some of these same players so this has a family feud like quality that is undeniable. (Certain of the archival posts on this topic and Hurricane Katrina can be found here and here.)
Any U. S. Magistrate from South Texas to the Southern District of Alabama could have written this exact same Order and Opinion in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Wilma and then Ike but discovery abuses were tolerated in the Fifth Circuit by and large. Cases were kneecapped out of the gate on the theory that money cases should settle and in the process bad faith claims handling was institutionalized under the law. Magistrate Gary Brown from the Eastern District of New York took a look at the case from a different angle and he came to a far different conclusion. Here is the salient verbiage:
The context remains important: according to the City of Long Beach, the losses here totaled approximately $205,000, while the testimony at trial suggested that the insurer has already paid out about $80,000. Pl’s Ex. 1. Thus, based on these rough figures, the most that could be at issue here amounted to approximately $125,000 and, based on the coverage limits of $250,000, no more than about $170,000 could be at stake. To a government-backed insurer, these are trifling figures, and in the world of federal cases, such figures are unimpressive, particularly when compared to the exorbitant costs of litigation. On the other hand, to individual homeowners, these are staggeringly large sums.
Before I present the 27 page Judicial beatdown of the National Flood Insurance Program and it’s lawyers over at Gerald Nielsen’s law firm, I’ll opine that what we have here is the tail wagging the dog. Magnum and his people over at Gauthier Houghtaling and Williams certainly expended a fortune to uncover the unsavory claims practices including the bullshit revised engineering reports insurers relied upon to deny coverage after Superstorm Sandy (and here on the coast after Hurricane Katrina) and they deserve props for the time, money and effort. Click the pic to nab the 27 page pdf: