Our client, a local commercial building owner, was forced to file a lawsuit against Zurich American Insurance Company after its hailstorm damage claim was wrongfully denied under Texas law.
March 2016 Hailstorm
On March 17, 2016, a hailstorm swept across Arlington, Texas, substantially damaging the plaintiff’s properties. The properties suffered damage to the roof, HVAC, exterior, and interior. Immediately upon discovering the damage, the plaintiff filed a hailstorm insurance claim with Zurich. In response to the claim, Zurich assigned adjusters, consultants, and agents to the plaintiff’s file that were inadequately trained to handle this type of claim.
Specifically, Zurich assigned the claim to an independent adjuster with decision-making authority over the claim and responsibility for assessing damages to the properties under the policy. The independent adjuster failed to perform a proper and thorough investigation of the claim.
The independent adjuster failed to engage appropriate consultants and adjusters to objectively evaluate the damage and performed an outcome-oriented investigation aimed at denying the plaintiff’s claim. The adjuster utilized a vendor-preferred consultant to assess the damage, but failed to provide a scope of estimates to the plaintiff.
The plaintiff was forced to hire its own consultant to assess the damage and prepare an estimate, which included obvious damage the independent adjuster chose to ignore. Throughout the claims processes, defendants’ adjuster prolonged and delayed any claim resolution.
Zurich relied on the independent adjuster’s substandard investigation in making coverage determinations and in deciding what amounts, if any, to pay on the claim. As a result, the plaintiff’s hailstorm damage claim was grossly underpaid, and Zurich refused to issue further payments under the policy.
Zurich Violated The Texas Insurance Code
Our client cites numerous violations of the Texas Insurance Code, including the failure to pay a claim without conducting a reasonable investigation, failure to adopt and implement reasonable standards for prompt investigation of claims, and misrepresentation of the insurance policy under which it affords property coverage to the plaintiff.
Raizner Slania: Hailstorm Damage Claim Attorneys
If your insurance carrier denied, delayed, underpaid, or disputed a Texas hailstorm damage claim, call the experienced insurance lawyers at Raizner Slania today. Our lawyers have been extremely successful in obtaining fair compensation for victims of bad faith insurance practices throughout Texas and across the country. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.