A consumer group has called for a legislative investigation of Texas Windstorm Insurance Association, the state’s largest windstorm insurer. The group is claiming that poorly trained adjusters underpaid, under-assessed and delayed claims after Hurricane Ike in September 2008.
Texas Watch executive director Alex Winslow and state Senator Rodney Ellis called for an investigation after learning of internal e-mails and documentation with evidence that the TWIA may have had policies of low-balling repair costs and denying claims unjustly.
The TWIA responded that the investigation stemmed from a League City resident who claimed hundreds of thousands of dollars of damages beyond his policy’s limits. E-mails came to light in the lawsuit of League City resident Bakht Khattak vs. TWIA
Windstorm claims manager Bill Knarr said in a 2008 e-mail to an adjuster “if the shingle is not damaged and it doesn’t adhere any longer because debris is under it probably was that way long before Ike. Solution, if pushed by the insured to pay for a new roof because of that condition we will put a dab of mastic or tar like material under the tabs that are loose and they will stay adhered for the rest of their life. If we paid for new roofs because of loose shingles, we would buy every roof that had a claim”