BOISE — The Idaho Department of Insurance has received information that unlicensed individuals are attempting to act as public adjusters, particularly concerning claims for damage from recent hailstorms.
The department warns consumers to be cautious when approached by anyone offering to assist with the settlement of a claim, or offering advice about insurance coverage or claims.
Public adjusters are required to be licensed and bonded by the state of Idaho in order to protect consumers. Typically, they will not provide the repair work or act as the contractor, nor will they engage in door-to-door solicitation.
Consider the following before hiring a public adjuster to assist with your claim:
- Search at doi.idaho.gov/Licensing/Search to check if a public adjuster is properly licensed in Idaho.
- Public adjusters do not work for insurance companies — they are hired by the insured to assist in the preparation, presentation and settlement of a claim.
- Always carefully read any documents before signing. Obtain copies of all documents you sign, including the contract and any releases or disclosures.
- Upon hiring a public adjuster to assist with the claim settlement, the insured may still initiate direct contact with the insurance company; the insurance company’s claim adjuster; or any other person involved in the claim.
- Carefully inspect the damage that a solicitor is suggesting be repaired. Consider whether a second opinion should be obtained.
- Remember that the insured always has the right to choose who completes the repair work.
- Public adjusters often have mutual relationships with contractors or motor vehicle repair shops and may even be compensated by them. However, any compensation or financial interest must be disclosed by the public adjuster in writing to the insured.
Call 208-334-4250 if an individual is soliciting as a public adjuster without a proper license or acting as a public adjuster and contractor.