Legal Spotlight: Matthew Pearson on Mitigation & Public Adjusters
Matthew Pearson, Founder of Pearson Legal, PC, shares why it’s important to have a public adjuster vet your mitigation companies and advocate for you from the beginning of your property damage insurance claim.
Well, mitigation is obviously important. They’re the first one out there, and the idea of mitigation is to protect your property from getting worse. Most of the time that you’re involving a mitigation company, you’re involved in a large loss and it may be a catastrophic loss. So at that particular point, think about the policyholder being at their weakest or most vulnerable point. There are plenty of mitigation companies out there that are good, that are qualified, that do good work. But there are a lot of companies out there that call themselves “mitigation companies,” but really they’re kind of fly-by-night.
So really what a policyholder needs at that time is someone that they can trust. Policyholders, some of them may have never had a claim before, have never dealt with mitigation companies and have no clue. So someone comes to their door, in a tie, in a suit, looks presentable. They’ll sign a contract because they’re desperate for any help. But if you have a public adjuster helping you out from the beginning, that is your advocate, that can vet those mitigation companies, and can keep them in their box so that they only do what they should do, that really goes a long way in helping the policyholder and it helps them from the beginning.
The most important lesson is you have to control the mitigation company. They can’t come out there and do whatever they want on the loss. You need to be able to control what they do and manage the work that they do so that the mitigation bill doesn’t become the biggest part of the claim, so that when you get to the important part, which is restoring your building, there’s not enough money left to do that.