Roger Schuldt Insurance Bloghttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/View Roger Schuldt Insurance's Website Blogen-uspostmaster@www.schuldt-ins.comInsurance Website Builder - www.insurancewebsitebuilder.comurn:uuid:e2ba67e5-cc11-4443-b975-fc08e0f9244curn:uuid:eb09147d-a1e3-4d42-a250-b0abf0f624b9http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/how-to-keep-the-insurance-claim-process-moving.aspxHow to keep the insurance claim process moving<img src='https://admin.insurancewebsitebuilder.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Communicate.jpg' align='left' /> &nbsp; Regardless of the type of insurance claim that you are talking about, the one thing that will make the process move as quickly as possible is good communication.&nbsp; There is a significant amount of communication that has to happen to move ...Thu, 21 Jan 2016 08:57:51 -0800<p style="text-align: left;"><img alt="" src="https://admin.insurancewebsitebuilder.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Communicate.jpg" style="text-align: center; width: 692px; height: 325px; vertical-align: text-bottom;" /><br /> &nbsp;<br /> Regardless of the type of insurance claim that you are talking about, the one thing that will make the process move as quickly as possible is good communication.&nbsp; There is a significant amount of communication that has to happen to move a claim to completion. Make sure that the process is never waiting on you.</p> <p>First, contact the insurance company as soon as possible. The sooner you get the claim started the sooner it will finish. </p> <p>Second, be responsive. Give the insurance adjuster your cell phone <span style="text-decoration: underline;">and</span> your email address. The easier it is to contact you when they need something the faster you will be able to respond. &nbsp;Don&rsquo;t wait for days to call back. Don&rsquo;t take a week to get back to them with a copy of the towing receipt. Are you in a hurry to have this claim processed or not?</p> <p>Third - drive the process. Every single time you talk to the adjuster ask them what is the next step in the process and when they expect to be done with that step. Then on that day send the adjuster an email or call asking for status. Most adjusters are handling multiple claims. Make sure <span style="text-decoration: underline;">your</span> claim is the one they want to get done next.</p> <p>It is not at all uncommon to have an adjuster complain to me that they can&rsquo;t get in touch with one of my insureds and at the same time have my insured complain that the insurance company is dragging their feet. Feel free to talk to your agent if you are not sure what you should be doing. Communication is hard. If you don&rsquo;t believe it just ask my wife.</p>urn:uuid:582257d5-3b14-46f9-9cd3-7baefae8bf84http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-six.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck - part six<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Justice.jpg' align='left' /> This is part six of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19th. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp; http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-le...Tue, 12 Jan 2016 13:58:48 -0800<img src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Justice.jpg" style="width: 320px; height: 240px; margin-right: 10px; float: left;" alt="Justice" /> <p style="text-align: left;"><span>This is part six of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19</span><sup>th</sup>. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;<br /> <a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx" target="_self">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx</a></p> <p><span>In my last posting I talked about the insurance company denying the claim and me deciding to file a lawsuit against the driver. </span></p> <p><span>I am one of these guys that thinks that there are way too many lawsuits so this is not something I take likely but after thinking about it quite a bit up to this point I have decided that I need to hold this insurance company accountable. They have made a mistake and the only way to correct that mistake is to file suit. This isn&rsquo;t really about the money, I have health insurance and the medical limits coverage on the farm&rsquo;s auto policy will cover my deductible/copays. This insurance company should be paying this claim and if for no other reason than integrity of the industry that I work in I want them to do what they are supposed to do and pay the claim.</span></p> <p><span>So when the suit is filed against the driver it will cause his employer&rsquo;s insurance company (that same national carrier that denied my claim) to step in to protect him. At that point the insurance company has a couple of options.</span></p> <p><span>First they may offer to settle by paying what they should have paid in the first place. They may have been bluffing and it really doesn&rsquo;t cost them anything (except bad feelings) to wait and see if I will go away. Sadly it is not uncommon for some less than reputable companies to do this. We see this fairly often when one of our insured&rsquo;s is hit by someone that has the minimum liability limits required by the state. The person who buys those limits is trying to get the cheapest coverage they can get. That coverage is often provided by a company that has low premiums because they are very reluctant to pay even legitimate claims.</span></p> <p><span>Second they may stick with the idea that I am partially responsible (&ldquo;we do not believe that our client&rsquo;s driver bears any negligence for this loss&rdquo;) for the claim and may offer to pay a portion of what they should have paid without going to court. Again, this is often done by companies that are more concerned with minimizing their payout than about doing the right thing. Sadly, there is a financial incentive to do this because they often would save more than it would cost to have a lower level (lower cost) in-house attorney handle this negotiation. </span></p> <p><span>Finally we could end up going to court. My experience from working in an insurance company is that the larger companies have a number of high priced attorneys on staff and/or on retainer and these attorneys will take a number of cases to court if for no other reason than to justify their place at the company. I know that sounds cynical and to be fair I can recall a couple of cases when I was with the insurance company where the insured retained an attorney and that attorney argued that the insured should be paid based on a very thin argument, so I guess it does go both ways.</span></p> <p><span>I would guess that the insurance company will try for the second option. I wouldn&rsquo;t think that this is a big enough case to justify the insurance company going to court but I may be wrong. </span></p> <p><span>My attorney tells me that he has seen an uptick in the number of suits that he is dealing with because insurance companies are denying claims. The insurance industry as a whole hasn&rsquo;t really made money on auto insurance since 2013 so I guess it is unsurprising that they are taking a close look at their claims payouts.<br /> <br /> I expect the process to slow down once again. I will post more on this subject when something happens. We will move on to other related subjects for a while.</span></p> <p style="text-align: right;"><span style="font-size: 10px;"> Photo credit: <span style="font-size: 10px;"><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/mikecogh/8035396680/">mikecogh</a> via <a href="http://visualhunt.com">VisualHunt</a> / <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">CC BY-SA</a></span></span></p>urn:uuid:df86705f-bc1e-45c4-846d-a53cb19e63f2http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-five.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck - part five<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/law-1063249_640.jpg' align='left' /> This is part five of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19th. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp; http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-...Thu, 07 Jan 2016 11:34:42 -0800<img alt="" src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/law-1063249_640.jpg" style="width: 320px; float: right;" /> <p><span>This is part five of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19</span><sup>th</sup>. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;<br /> <span><br /> <a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx" target="_self">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx</a></span></p> <p><span>Well at this point in our story I have good news and bad news.</span></p> <p><span>The good news is that the medical community has said that they don&rsquo;t need to see me anymore. I am still (shockingly) a little sore when I do anything out of the ordinary (running, carrying the Christmas tree up the stairs, etc.) However, all in all things are moving in the right direction.</span></p> <p><span>The bad news is that over the weekend I received a letter from the independent adjuster saying &ldquo;We have completed our investigation of this accident, and we do not believe that our client&rsquo;s driver bears any negligence for this loss. Per the police report, you had a contributing circumstance of &ldquo;improper turn/no signal&rdquo;. Therefore we must deny any payment to your claim.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span>First I will deal with the insurance terminology.&nbsp; The term &ldquo;contributing circumstance&rdquo; is the insurance company&rsquo;s way of saying that IF I had not used my turn signal THEN I was partially responsible for causing all of this to happen therefore they believe they should not pay for my damages.</span></p> <p><span>As you might expect I am a little disappointed. I am disappointed that the county sheriff&rsquo;s deputy never spoke to me yet chose to apparently take the other driver&rsquo;s word that I never used my turn signal. As I have said before I don&rsquo;t remember anything shortly before or after the accident so I don&rsquo;t KNOW that I used it but I have been driving for almost 40 years without an at-fault accident. That wouldn&rsquo;t happen if I was in the habit of not using my turn signals. I will be getting a copy of the police report. I should have done that earlier although we probably would have ended up in the same place anyway. </span></p> <p><span>I am also disappointed with the insurance company.&nbsp; I am all for capitalism. This large national insurance company is a for-profit entity and they owe it to their shareholders to not pay claims that they shouldn&rsquo;t pay. Anyone who claims that an insurance company isn&rsquo;t a little bit biased is being naive. I can tell you that there are companies that do their best to be fair. As an agent I wouldn&rsquo;t represent a company that didn&rsquo;t pay their claims. I have had a company executive tell me that it doesn&rsquo;t make a lot of sense to spend a bunch of money on advertising how good you are and then not pay claims. The word of mouth will travel way faster than the advertising.</span></p> <p><span>&nbsp;I understand that the value/purpose of the insurance industry is to share or transfer the risk of a loss and to step up and make the person that sustained damage &ldquo;whole&rdquo;. &nbsp;<a href="http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/make+one+whole" target="_blank"><span style="color: black;">http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/make+one+whole</span></a>&nbsp; I feel in this case that the independent adjuster and the company put their best interests (the adjuster wants to impress the company in order to get more business and the company wants to keep their money) ahead of their responsibility to share/transfer the risk of this auto accident caused by their insured&rsquo;s driver. I suspect as soon as they saw that comment on the police report they saw that they had a way out of paying my claim.</span></p> <p><span>Therefore I guess we are going to have to go to court. I went to see my attorney and since this posting is already getting long that will be the subject of my next posting next week (really, next week I promise).</span></p> The next posting can be found here&nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-six.aspx">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-six.aspx</a>urn:uuid:ea3d5860-5ae7-46e7-9e56-3e92b3e14daehttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-four.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck - part four<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/despair-alone-being-alone-archetype-archetypes.jpg' align='left' /> This is part four of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19th. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-le...Mon, 14 Dec 2015 10:47:06 -0800<img alt="" src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/despair-alone-being-alone-archetype-archetypes.jpg" style="width: 400px; float: right;" /> <p>This is part four of the review of my auto accident claim that happened on October 19<sup>th</sup>. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx</a></p> <p>As you may remember in the last posting I talked mostly about talking to the other company&rsquo;s independent adjuster. </p> <p>A few days later we were notified by the same adjuster that he had someone go take pictures of the vehicle and the accident site and we could move the vehicle.&nbsp; We called a junk yard and they came and got the vehicle. If and (I hope) when they pay for our vehicle they will determine how much our vehicle was worth and they will pay us for the vehicle minus what we received from the junkyard.</p> <p>A few weeks went by and the bills started to roll in. I have been lucky enough to not need to have much interaction with the medical community in my life but after seeing the medical bills I am shocked by the price of medical care.&nbsp; All told so far I have emailed four separate medical bills to the independent adjuster.&nbsp; He never responded to any of those emails and since it had been weeks since I talked to him I asked him for a status on our claim. He came back asking if I am done with all of the doctors&rsquo; appointments. I told him I still had one (hopefully final) appointment scheduled with the neurologist. His response was &ldquo;<em>I have spoken to my client.&nbsp; Once I receive a final answer, I will let you know.&nbsp; It would be best to wait until you receive your final medical bills.&rdquo;</em> I thought that was an interesting response to send to a claimant (I don&rsquo;t think he knows I am an insurance agent). So I responded with <em>&ldquo;Best for whom? Why would it be best?&rdquo; </em>I am not trying to be smart-alecky or difficult; I really want to know why he thinks that would be best. </p> <p>What I think would be best is if this insurance company took into account what would be best for the person that their customer hit with a truck and not necessarily only what would be best for them. I suspect that he is saying that they are not going to pay anything until they get me to sign a contract where they and I agree what is owed. They won&rsquo;t do that until all of the bills are turned in. I think the mindset is that they can use my desire to have them pay to get me to sign and the longer they wait the more eager I will be and they get to hold onto my money a little longer. Time is on their side. I sent the response email asking why waiting was &ldquo;best&rdquo; seven days ago and have heard nothing back. </p> <p>Not all insurance companies act like this. Two years ago when we had a customer with tornado damage to a building (turned out to be almost a half a million in damage) the independent adjuster called the insurance company and received authorization to tell us to start bringing in electricians and other help to get the cleanup started on their dime because at that time that is what was &ldquo;best&rdquo; for the customer.</p> <p>That is all that has happened up to this point. My doctor&rsquo;s appointment isn&rsquo;t for about a week or so. I doubt that the insurance company will speak to me until I send the bills for that meeting (assuming that is the last one). I will follow up when something new happens.<br /> <br /> <strong>Update:</strong>Something happened -&nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-five.aspx" target="_self">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-five.aspx</a></p> <p>Photo via&nbsp;<a href="http://visualhunt.com/">Visualhunt</a></p>urn:uuid:e235e36b-a75c-4c5c-9b06-49b9360218e6http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-three.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck - part three<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/2573790845_648df132d7.jpg' align='left' />This is part three of the review of my auto accident claim that happened about 6 weeks ago. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other two postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog...Thu, 03 Dec 2015 15:08:38 -0800<p><img alt="" src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/2573790845_648df132d7.jpg" style="width: 400px; height: 300px; float: right;" />This is part three of the review of my auto accident claim that happened about 6 weeks ago. If you haven&rsquo;t read the other two postings you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx"><span style="color: windowtext;">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx</span></a></p> <p>As you may remember in the last posting we stopped at the point where I have notified my insurance company of the accident in case we need to make a claim against our medical payments coverage. </p> <p>Medical payment coverage covers medical expenses incurred by you and/or anyone in the vehicle. It is an optional coverage and in the past people have pointed out to me that this coverage is redundant if you have health insurance. My response is that your health insurance has deductibles and copays (very long rant coming about health insurance in another posting) and this coverage helps to pay for those things that your health insurance won&rsquo;t pay for. Also you can&rsquo;t be sure that everyone in your car will have health insurance. </p> <p>I also received a call from an independent adjuster working for the other insurance company. An independent adjuster (also sometimes called a third party adjuster) is an adjuster hired by an insurance company when they don&rsquo;t have the staff to work a claim usually because they are too busy or they don&rsquo;t have anyone in the area. In this case I assume the other insurance company, which is a large national insurer, doesn&rsquo;t have anyone down here in god&rsquo;s county. I have worked with some very good independent adjusters and I have worked with some that are not so good. Usually the ones that aren&rsquo;t good are not good because they assume that the insurance company that has hired them is looking to get out of paying and the adjuster looks for any reason to report back that they don&rsquo;t have to pay. The thinking is that if they make the insurance company happy the insurance company will hire them again.</p> <p>So about a week after the accident I received a call from an independent adjuster and I got the impression that he was looking for a way to not pay our claim. He asked me if the grain elevator was on my right or my left at the time of the accident. I told him that the elevator was on my left. He asked if there were any driveways on my right. I said that there were some (I think three) houses on the right. He asked if I thought it was possible that the other driver thought I was turning right. I said I am sure I had my turn signal on and I would think that someone would assume that a grain truck would be turning into grain elevator not into the driveway of a house. Furthermore assuming he missed my turn signal would he just assume I was going to turn right and go ahead and pass on the left? He said he didn&rsquo;t know. The conversation was relatively short. He said that he didn&rsquo;t yet have a copy of the crash report and he hadn&rsquo;t seen the vehicle I was driving but he was working on getting that information.</p> <p>In the next posting I will talk a little about what auto and medical claims have (hopefully by then) been paid. That can be found here -&nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-four.aspx">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-four.aspx</a></p> Photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/27248028@N02/2573790845/" target="_blank">stupid.fotos</a> / <a href="http://visualhunt.com" target="_blank">VisualHunt.com</a> / <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/" target="_blank">CC BY</a>urn:uuid:06ef8f14-4c64-41d0-9180-f5e3a3d0924ehttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-two.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck - part two This is part two of the review of my auto accident claim that I posted earlier this week. If you haven&rsquo;t read that posting you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-m...Thu, 05 Nov 2015 08:00:00 -0800<span id="docs-internal-guid-bbdc1373-cf77-a25e-c1fa-70635491e750"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span></span></p> <span id="docs-internal-guid-bbdc1373-cf78-a1d8-fa2e-f57919d4d199"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>This is part two of the review of my auto accident claim that I posted earlier this week. If you haven&rsquo;t read that posting you will probably need to go back and do that before you read this one. &nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx" target="_blank"><span style="color: #1155cc;">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspx</span></a><span> </span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>Anyway, at this point on the timeline I have had the accident and need to go about notifying the insurance companies. As I stated earlier, since I believe this to be the other driver's responsibility and therefore his insurance company&rsquo;s responsibility, we used the crash report to find out the other driver&rsquo;s insurance company and we notified them of the accident. As often happens in these cases the trucking company was apparently hoping that this whole thing would go away and was in no hurry to notify&nbsp;their insurance company. An insurance company has a vested interest in investigating the accident to make sure their customer has no liability or if they do have liability most companies will want to get things moving so they can control things before a lawyer gets involved. So when we notified them, the other driver&rsquo;s insurance company opened a claim and gave us the claim number. If I was clearly at fault we would not have notified the other insurance company.</span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>You may notice that I have not mentioned my insurance company yet. In an ideal world the other driver&rsquo;s insurance company will step up and pay the bills and everything will work as it ought to. Often times the insurance company denies fault or moves very slowly etc. In those cases we will get our own insurance company involved. The upside of this is that we have the benefit of their experience and expertise. The downside is that we may lose our claims free discount if we have one and we are responsible for any deductibles on our policy if our insurance company pays. In rarer cases our insurance company will pay the bills and then go after the other insurance company through arbitration or by filing a lawsuit. This is called subrogation </span><a href="http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/subrogation" target="_blank"><span style="color: #1155cc;">http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/subrogation</span></a><span> </span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>I have not mentioned that the vehicle that I was driving was manufactured in 1983. While it was in good shape we knew that if we had a claim the truck would be very heavily depreciated by the insurance company so we did not have it insured for physical damage (liability only). Therefore, the only claim we could turn in to our insurance company was for our medical payments coverage. We are insured by a very good company - Pekin Insurance. When we turned in the claim I was called by an adjuster from Pekin. She asked me a number of questions and told me she would set up the claim and we would wait to see what the other insurance company did. I am sure she ordered the crash report etc. This is a situation that we see fairly often. If the other driver is found to be liable then his insurance company will determine the value of our grain truck and reimburse us for that lost value (which admittedly won&rsquo;t be much). If he isn&rsquo;t found liable then we take this loss on ourselves because we chose not to insure the vehicle for physical damage.</span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>In the next posting I will talk a little about my interaction with the other insurance company's adjuster and how that process works.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 11pt;">You can find that here -&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 11pt;"><a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-three.aspx" target="_self">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-three.aspx</a>&nbsp;</span></p> </span> <div><span><br /> </span></div> </span>urn:uuid:334ba4e5-65e3-4312-a81e-c46c064a6061http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck.aspxSo let me tell you about getting hit by a truck.<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Accident%201.jpg' align='left' /> As some of you may know I was involved in an auto accident on 10/19. Since this claim looks to be relatively complex (a totaled vehicle, medical payments, a question of who is at fault, etc) I thought it might be valuable to talk about this incident...Tue, 03 Nov 2015 16:00:00 -0800<span id="docs-internal-guid-bbdc1373-cf49-08bf-b94b-dac3ed84c351"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span><img alt="" src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Accident%201.jpg" style="float: right; width: 400px; height: 300px;" />As some of you may know I was involved in an auto accident on 10/19. Since this claim looks to be relatively complex (a totaled vehicle, medical payments, a question of who is at fault, etc) I thought it might be valuable to talk about this incident from an insurance perspective. The insurance recovery process can be complicated and this is an opportunity to explain what is happening as it is happening. </span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>So to begin, I was driving a grain truck partially full of grain to the grain elevator for our family farm. As I was making a left turn into the grain elevator I was struck by a employee driver of a trucking company as he attempted to pass me on my left driving a semi (box trailer). I hit my head and have no memory of the few seconds before the accident or 15 or so minutes after the accident. I regularly use my turn signals and assume I had my signal on but to be honest I can't remember anything during that time. In my mind, he was at fault and his insurance should pay for the damages and medical bills. I am biased however.</span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>An interesting item, at least one I have never heard of before, is that I have not ever talked to a police officer about this accident. Usually they will come to the hospital. I was taken to one hospital and then transferred to another and maybe they just couldn&rsquo;t find me. Regardless, I have never heard of that happening before. They did leave me a blank crash report to fill out and send in. </span><em><span>When a driver has an auto accident in Illinois </span><span style="background-color: #ffffff;">if the crash caused a death, bodily injury, or more than $1,500 of property damage then </span></em><span><em>they are required by law to fill out a crash report and send it to the state police. If this is not done the driver will have their license suspended</em>. </span><a href="http://www.isp.state.il.us/traffic/crashreports.cfm" target="_blank"><span style="color: #1155cc;">http://www.isp.state.il.us/traffic/crashreports.cfm</span></a><span> &nbsp;I have no idea if the other driver was given a ticket or cited in any way. My experience with that is that it really depends a lot on the police officer. Some are very quick to assign blame and some almost never do.</span></p> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>In these cases the medical community asks a lot of questions about who is going to be paying for the bills. This could really go three ways (likely a combination of two of these). </span></p> <ol style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"> <li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: decimal;"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>I could pay for the medical bills personally (in my case through my Blue Cross Blue Shield health insurance).</span></p> </li> <li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: decimal;"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>This could be paid by through a workers compensation claim.</span></p> </li> <li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: decimal;"> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>This could be covered by either my medical payments coverage on my auto policy and/or the farm&rsquo;s auto insurance and/or the other driver&rsquo;s auto insurance.</span></p> </li> </ol> <br /> <p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span>This posting is going to be too long to be readable so I am going to break this into a couple of postings. In the next posting I will talk about notifying the insurance companies about the accidents, how that works and things to keep in mind during that process. You can find that here -&nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-two.aspx" target="_self">http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/so-let-me-tell-you-about-getting-hit-by-a-truck--part-two.aspx</a></span></p> <div><span><br /> </span></div> </span>urn:uuid:38a50e06-e8c3-4a0e-9f18-8937903978f5http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/5-tips-for-new-parents-choosing-life-insurance-for-the-first-time.aspx5 tips for new parents choosing life insurance for the first timeSeptember is Life Insurance awareness month. Here are 5 tips for new parents choosing life insurance for the first time. http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2014/05/17/5-tips-for-new-parents-considering-life-insurance/9185559/Fri, 04 Sep 2015 16:00:00 -0700September is Life Insurance awareness month. Here are 5 tips for new parents choosing life insurance for the first time.<br /> <br /> <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2014/05/17/5-tips-for-new-parents-considering-life-insurance/9185559/" target="_blank">http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2014/05/17/5-tips-for-new-parents-considering-life-insurance/9185559/</a>urn:uuid:de78ce5b-1c16-47c4-8289-f40dc4486ea1http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/what-is-an-additional-insured.aspxWhat is an Additional Insured?Liability insurance (either a standalone commercial liability policy or the liability portion of a homeowners or renters policy) will defend the named insured if they are sued. If you have another entity that could be sued (a corporation or LLC for e...Mon, 17 Aug 2015 14:00:00 -0700<p>Liability insurance (either a standalone commercial liability policy or the liability portion of a homeowners or renters policy) will defend the named insured if they are sued. If you have another entity that could be sued (a corporation or LLC for example) make sure that entity is named on some liability policy as either a named insured or an additional insured. If an entity that is not named on a policy is sued they usually are not provided protection from that policy (there are some exceptions to that statement &ndash; like children for example).&nbsp;</p>urn:uuid:e1e2ed34-bb2f-4f5d-81e1-ab4e5d2b156dhttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/this-area-is-a-disaster.aspxThis area is a disasterSPRINGFIELD, IL&mdash;The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has granted the request of Governor Rauner for disaster designation in 87 Illinois counties and 14 contiguous counties that suffered losses due to rain and flooding this year. &...Thu, 13 Aug 2015 09:31:58 -0700<p style="background-color: #ffffff;">SPRINGFIELD, IL&mdash;The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has granted the request of Governor Rauner for disaster designation in 87 Illinois counties and 14 contiguous counties that suffered losses due to rain and flooding this year.</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">&ldquo;Illinois has suffered a lot of storm and rain damage throughout this Spring and Summer,&rdquo; Rauner said. &ldquo;I am pleased our request for federal assistance was granted and encourage farmers throughout these counties to contact their local Farm Service Agency for questions.&rdquo;</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">The governor issued an official letter to USDA Secretary Vilsack on July 23, 2015. The 19 members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation also signed a letter to President Obama to endorse the governor&rsquo;s request for this designation. Counties eligible for assistance were determined through the Loss Assessment Reports reviewed by the USDA.</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">&ldquo;I am grateful to all the members of our Illinois Congressional delegation for their strong and united support for securing this assistance for farmers throughout the state,&rdquo; Rauner added.</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">Farmers who believe they may be eligible for assistance should contact their county Farm Service Agency office. Loan applications are considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and applicant&rsquo;s repayment ability. Farmers who have questions should contact the state FSA office at (217) 241-6600.</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">Counties eligible for assistance include: Adams, Alexander, Bond, Brown, Calhoun, Carroll, Cass, Champaign, Clark, Clay, Clinton, Crawford, Cumberland, DeKalb, DeWitt, Douglas, DuPage, Edwards, Effingham, Fayette, Ford, Franklin, Fulton, Gallatin, Greene, Grundy, Hamilton, Hancock, Hardin, Henderson, Henry, Iroquois, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Jersey, Johnson, Kane, Kankakee, Knox, La Salle, Lawrence, Lee, Livingston, Logan, McDonough, McLean, Macon, Macoupin, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Mason, Massac, Menard, Mercer, Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, Peoria, Perry, Piatt, Pike, Pope, Pulaski, Putnam, Randolph, Richland, Rock Island, St. Clair, Saline, Sangamon, Schuyler, Scott, Stark, Tazewell, Union, Vermilion, Wabash, Warren, Washington, Wayne, White, Whiteside, Will, Williamson, Woodford</p> <p style="background-color: #ffffff;">Counties named as contiguous disaster counties eligible for assistance: Boone, Bureau, Christian, Coles, Cook, Edgar, Jo Daviess, Kendall, McHenry, Moultrie, Ogle, Shelby, Stephenson, Winnebago</p>urn:uuid:bd9608de-0e9d-4fca-9887-18f98d1fb824http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/water-damage.aspxWater DamageAs you might expect we have had a number of water damage claims the last few weeks. &nbsp;Since all homeowners policies exclude flood coverage there are really two ways that you can insure against rain water damage. First the federal government provi...Tue, 11 Aug 2015 11:00:00 -0700<p>As you might expect we have had a number of water damage claims the last few weeks. &nbsp;Since all homeowners policies exclude flood coverage there are really two ways that you can insure against rain water damage. First the federal government provides for flood protection through the national flood insurance program. <a href="https://www.fema.gov/national-flood-insurance-program" target="_blank">https://www.fema.gov/national-flood-insurance-program</a> This is relatively expensive coverage but if you are willing to spend the money you can get good risk protection. </p> <p>The other coverage is water backup coverage. This coverage can be added to most homeowners policies and it usually gives you a little coverage (2,000ish to 25,000ish) for a loss caused by water which backs up through sewers, drains, sump pumps, etc. Not great coverage but it gives you a little risk protection if you have a finished basement or appliances in the basement or really anything around your sump pump that could be ruined or damaged by water.</p>urn:uuid:68f40686-13f0-41f1-98f1-1e57687d3b22http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/grace-periods-late-payments-and-policy-lapses.aspxGrace Periods, Late Payments, and Policy LapsesMost, though not all, insurance companies have a grace period when it comes to payment due dates. &nbsp;Depending on the company, that period can be anywhere from 1 day to as many as 10&nbsp;days before the policy cancels for non-payment. &nbsp; If a...Fri, 07 Aug 2015 16:54:32 -0700Most, though not all, insurance companies have a grace period when it comes to payment due dates. &nbsp;Depending on the company, that period can be anywhere from 1 day to as many as 10&nbsp;days before the policy cancels for non-payment. &nbsp; If a payment is made past the cancellation&nbsp;date and time, a reinstatement fee will often be charged. &nbsp;Late payments are not accepted in all&nbsp;cases, which may result in a lapse.<br /> <br /> A lapse in coverage is going to hit your wallet when you reinstate, reissue, or purchase a new&nbsp;policy. Car insurance companies consider the uncovered to be higher risk than those who&nbsp;diligently keep their policies in force. &nbsp;Even a one-day lapse in coverage can lead to higher rates.&nbsp;After an auto insurance lapse, your ability to get insurance at an affordable rate could be&nbsp;compromised. And, chances are, it will be at an increased rate. You may need to an insurance&nbsp;company that specializes in insuring risky drivers. Typically, high-risk insurers charge more for&nbsp;their policies so complete, affordable coverage might be difficult to obtain.<br /> <br /> Kim Housemanurn:uuid:d9f43fbc-2075-42ab-af46-496dd2ff7d23http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/how-old-is-your-roof.aspxHow old is your roof?<img src='http://www.schuldt-ins.com/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Roof.jpg' align='left' /> This is a picture of one of our insured&rsquo;s houses that is getting new shingles on the roof. One of the reasons that home insurance has been going up for the last few years is because most insurance companies are losing money insuring homes. T...Fri, 24 Jul 2015 15:00:00 -0700<img alt="" src="/img/~www.schuldt-ins.com/Roof.jpg" style="width: 480px; height: 270px; float: right;" /> <p>This is a picture of one of our insured&rsquo;s houses that is getting new shingles on the roof. <br /> <br /> One of the reasons that home insurance has been going up for the last few years is because most insurance companies are losing money insuring homes. The problem arises from the situation where a hail storm goes through a community and a few houses have damage to their roof and now everyone on the block gets a new roof even if their roof was already worn out. The whole idea behind insurance is to try to replace what was lost in the event of a claim. If a worn out roof is replaced with a brand new roof then that isn&rsquo;t really insurance. A big initiative for the insurance industry in general is to try to contain roof claims when the roof is already worn out. Many insurance companies are tracking the age of roofs and in some cases giving a discount for new roofs and in other cases charging extra for old roofs. <br /> <br /> It is in your best interest to make sure we know if you put on a new roof.</p>urn:uuid:15a7ba0a-4ee2-4d97-aafd-625db3c0d27bhttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/collectibles-coverage-on-a-homeowners-policy.aspxCollectibles coverage on a homeowners policyThe standard homeowners policy has coverages for property that most homeowners have. If your home was wiped out by a tornado for example and you were sitting down with a claims adjuster he/she would not bat an eye if you said that you had some televi...Fri, 17 Jul 2015 11:00:00 -0700<span>The standard homeowners policy has coverages for property that most homeowners have. If your home was wiped out by a tornado for example and you were sitting down with a claims adjuster he/she would not bat an eye if you said that you had some televisions and a lawn mower in the garage and some appliances, etc. Almost everyone who owns a house has such things. If you have some collection of things or some things that are way more valuable than the run of the mill household, then those things should be discussed and perhaps listed on the policy <span style="text-decoration: underline;">before</span> you have a claim. In some cases there may be an extra charge. In other cases the insurance company may ask for an appraisal or a bill of sale. In all cases it is better to have that discussion before a tornado moves your genuine star wars collectibles collection to the bottom of Lake Michigan.</span>urn:uuid:456443a9-949d-42fb-a016-0e7443fef400http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/do-i-need-rental-car-insurance.aspxDo I need rental car insuranceCopied with permission from Pekin Insurance's My Favorite Things blog&nbsp;http://www.pekininsurance.com/do-i-need-rental-car-insurance/ Whenever you have rented a vehicle from a rental car company, have you been overwhelmed with the legal wording i...Tue, 14 Jul 2015 10:00:00 -0700<em>Copied with permission from Pekin Insurance's My Favorite Things blog&nbsp;<a href="http://www.pekininsurance.com/do-i-need-rental-car-insurance/" target="_blank">http://www.pekininsurance.com/do-i-need-rental-car-insurance/</a></em><br /> <br /> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">Whenever you have rented a vehicle from a rental car company, have you been overwhelmed with the legal wording in the contract?</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">When the car rental agent asks the question, &ldquo;Would you like to purchase insurance or sign a waiver?&rdquo; are you unsure how to respond?</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">Do you know if your personal automobile policy provides rental car coverage? What if my child who resides with me wants to rent a vehicle; does my policy provide coverage for him or her to rent the vehicle?</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">A Pekin Insurance&reg; personal automobile policy provides coverage for a vehicle rented by an &ldquo;insured&rdquo; as a temporary substitute vehicle. An insured is defined as the individual named on the policy, their spouse (if a resident of the same household), and any resident relative.</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">The coverage provided is the broadest coverage carried on your personal auto policy. If you only carry liability insurance, then your personal auto policy will pay up to your policy limits for an accident where it is determined the insured is legally liable. For the policy to pay for the damage caused to the rental car itself, you must carry physical damage coverage on an owned vehicle.</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">The personal auto policy only provides liability and/or physical damage coverage. The personal auto policy does NOT provide coverage to a rental vehicle for the following losses:</p> <ul style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 10px 0px 10px 20px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;"> <li style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; background: transparent;">Diminution in value &ndash; the monetary difference between a car&rsquo;s pre-accident value and the car&rsquo;s value after an accident and repair.</li> <li style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; background: transparent;">Valet Parking &ndash; when a rented vehicle is being parked by a valet.</li> <li style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; background: transparent;">Loss of use to the rented vehicle.</li> </ul> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">The above coverage may be added to your Pekin Insurance personal automobile policy with the purchase of our Auto Guard endorsement.</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">Knowing what coverage your policy provides should give you the confidence that you will make the correct decision about the purchase of insurance the next time you need to rent a vehicle as a temporary substitute for a vehicle you own.</p> <p style="color: #48423f; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 0px 10px; border: 0px; background: #ffffff;">Becky<br /> <em style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; background: transparent;">Senior Personal Lines Research &amp; Development Specialist</em></p> <br />urn:uuid:0b816b6d-4ccc-478d-9dac-04c1de034b19http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/this-is-why-you-dont-buy-life-insurance-off-of-the-internet.aspxThis is why you don't buy life insurance off of the internetfrom marketwatch.com&nbsp;http://www.marketwatch.com/story/life-insurance-industry-a-risk-to-us-stability-imf-says-2015-07-07 WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The U.S. life insurance industry has "substantial long-term stability risks" according to a stre...Fri, 10 Jul 2015 11:00:00 -0700from marketwatch.com&nbsp;<a href="http://www.marketwatch.com/story/life-insurance-industry-a-risk-to-us-stability-imf-says-2015-07-07" target="_blank">http://www.marketwatch.com/story/life-insurance-industry-a-risk-to-us-stability-imf-says-2015-07-07</a><br /> <br /> <span style="color: #333333; background-color: #ffffff;"><em>WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The U.S. life insurance industry has "substantial long-term stability risks" according to a stress test conducted by the International Monetary Fund staff. In a report released Tuesday, the IMF said that prolonged low interest rates "pose a slow burning solvency risk" for life insurers. If low rate stay until 2018, 11 out of 18 life insurance groups would report negative shareholder equity, the IMF said. The industry also faces risk of a sharp spike in interest rates. In addition, rising rates could lead to an increase in policy surrenders as policyholders seek higher yields, leaving the sector vulnerable to liquidity drain. The IMF said it was "imperative" for Congress to set up an independent agency to oversee the industry, an idea opposed by insurance firms, who are now regulated at the state level.</em></span><br />urn:uuid:52c4b48d-57b0-42d3-8fe5-cdfea4c0d39fhttp://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/crop-insurance.aspxCrop InsuranceIt is not uncommon for the media to talk about what a handout crop insurance is. The reality is that the goal is that the federal crop insurance program will take in a dollar of premium for every dollar they pay in claims. In 2014 they only paid 90 c...Mon, 06 Jul 2015 11:00:00 -0700<p>It is not uncommon for the media to talk about what a handout crop insurance is. The reality is that the goal is that the federal crop insurance program will take in a dollar of premium for every dollar they pay in claims. In 2014 they only paid 90 cents in claims for every dollar they took in, however they don&rsquo;t make mention of what the taxpayer is paying for the other component which is the expense ratio (marketing, administrative fees, paying the agents and adjusters, etc). For this program to not be a drag on the taxpayer they need to take in a dollar for every dollar that is spent for both losses and expenses combined. This is known as the &ldquo;combined ratio&rdquo; in insurance vernacular.&nbsp; I find it interesting that corn and soybeans (which is most of what is insured in the Midwest) is paying out 85 cents in loses for every dollar they take in. That is probably pretty close to a combined ratio of 1.</p> <a href="http://will.illinois.edu/agriculture/note/crop-insurance-loss-performance-in-2014" target="_blank">http://will.illinois.edu/agriculture/note/crop-insurance-loss-performance-in-2014</a>urn:uuid:6be6c7b6-2a9a-4b16-a7a4-d0284bf1ba50http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/changes.aspxChangesAs the second posting on the new website I thought it would be appropriate to explain some changes you will see going forward. I have been reading and attending some events put on by some of our insurance carriers on the subject of marketing and how ...Thu, 02 Jul 2015 14:35:34 -0700<p>As the second posting on the new website I thought it would be appropriate to explain some changes you will see going forward. I have been reading and attending some events put on by some of our insurance carriers on the subject of marketing and how to make sure we are communicating effectively.</p> <span>This was the reason behind redoing our website and we have a few other things in the wings that will improve our communications also. I realize that there are very few folks out there that are craving a lot of &ldquo;insurance talk&rdquo;. However, we take seriously our role as the protector of people&rsquo;s assets.&nbsp; To do that we should really talk about what that means. We will also sprinkle in some talk about the local community and what is going on here. If you have thoughts about the best use of this communications vehicle, please leave a comment or get in touch with us.</span>urn:uuid:148de731-1d1a-4b0e-bfa2-d0b2d6047e32http://www.schuldt-ins.com/blog/welcome-to-the-new-site.aspxWelcome to the new site!We have wanted to do this for a while now but we finally have a platform that we can use to communicate. This new website has some things that the old one didn&rsquo;t like... The ability to point you to the correct webpage to make a payment wit...Tue, 23 Jun 2015 10:15:53 -0700<p>We have wanted to do this for a while now but we finally have a platform that we can use to communicate. This new website has some things that the old one didn&rsquo;t like...</p> <ol> <li>The ability to point you to the correct webpage to make a payment with many of our carriers.&nbsp;<a href="/payments.aspx">Make a Payment</a></li> <li>The customer service request forms let you ask us for things that you need.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/customer_service/default.aspx">Customer Service</a></li> <li>Much better explanations of insurance coverages. <a href="http://www.schuldt-ins.com/business/default.aspx">For example</a></li> <li>I really like the employee directory.&nbsp;<a href="/employees.aspx">Employee Directory</a></li> </ol> <p>Feel free to poke around and let us know what you think.&nbsp;</p>