A Shortage of Claims Adjusters Leads to an Innovative Idea


A Shortage of Claims Adjusters Leads to an Innovative Idea

A Shortage of Claims Adjusters Leads to an Innovative Idea

As of Jan. 5, 2018, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) reported that a total of 877,843 claims relating to damages incurred when Hurricane Irma hit the state on Sept. 10, 2017 had been filed. The OIR estimated that insured losses resulting from the Category 4 hurricane totaled $7,206,877,805.

Not surprisingly, as the Insurance Journal pointed out, “One of the biggest issues in the aftermath of Irma has been a shortage of claims adjusters. The storm came just two weeks after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas and the industry has scrambled to bring in adjusters, leading to delays in resolving claims.”

As of Jan. 5, 2018, the OIR reported that 83.4 percent of all claims relating to Hurricane Irma had been closed. That left nearly 150,000 insurance claims still open.

In Palm Beach County, where you can call on the services of a BI Group private investigator in Boca Raton, 6,839 claims remained open as of Jan. 5, 2018. In St. John’s County, where the services of a BI Group private investigator in St. Augustine, FL are at your disposal, 1,401 Hurricane Irma claims remained open.

“The biggest challenge is you get a backlog when catastrophes hit like this. [Hurricane Harvey] was so close to what happened in Florida,” Bobby Raymond, owner of Jacksonville, Fla.-based Brightway, The Fort Caroline Agency, told the Insurance Journal in November. “There’s a limited pool of claims adjusters in the universe. We’ve warned clients carriers are doing the best they can, but they [could] take a while to get back to you.”

Raymond told the Insurance Journal that it was almost a month after Irma wreaked her havoc before he was able to get a claims adjuster out to assess the damage caused by two trees that fell on the homes he owns.

Those trees fell in Duval County, where 4,240 Hurricane Irma claims remained open as of Jan. 5, 2018, according to the OIR – and where you will find the main offices of the Buchanan Investigation Group (BI Group) and its team of highly skilled Florida private investigators.

Insurance investigations are one of the things that sets the BI Group apart from other private investigators in Florida. We are a full-service Florida private detective agency with a history of delivering professional investigative results. We are successful because we pay attention to the details, because we know Florida – from Jacksonville in the north to South Florida, where you will find our experienced private investigators in Fort Lauderdale – and because we have access to unique resources.

We offer a range of investigative services for the insurance industry, including property claims investigation, catastrophic injury and accident claim investigation, workman’s compensation claims and SIU management and compliance.

In the course of conducting property claims investigations following Hurricane Irma, we learned that a number of insurance carriers had adopted an innovative method of dealing with the backlog of claims. They used drones!

Amy O’Connor, the Southeast editor of Insurance Journal, reported on an aerial imagery provider that uses drones to do inspections for insurance companies. The drones are especially good for assessing damage to roofs and structures and to measurements related to property damage. Drones aren’t right for every situation, Kenneth Cook, SVP of EagleView OnSite Solutions, told O’Connor that the company’s drones had handled thousands of Irma claims for insurers.

“It’s a new method for them to get their work done. After any kind of a storm event — especially with two major events back to back — insurance adjusters are busy around the country, and insurance companies are always looking for faster more efficient ways to help customers,” Cook told the Insurance Journal.

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