What If An Insured Refuses to Pay a Public Adjuster After Services Have Been Rendered?
Insureds commonly dispute the amount of compensation owed to a public adjuster after the adjusting services have been rendered. Fortunately for public adjusters in Illinois, there are options to recover the agreed upon compensation they have earned.
One of the most efficient ways to collect in such circumstances is to file a lien on the insured’s property. Section 512.52 of the Illinois Insurance Code (215 ILCS 5/512.52 (West 2008)) provides the proper statutory authority for such lien. Specifically, Section 512.52 states the following in relevant parts:
(a) “Adjusting insurance claims” means representing an insured with an insurer for compensation, and while representing that insured
either negotiating values, damages, or depreciation, or applying the loss circumstances to insurance policy provisions.
(c) “Registered Firm” means a person registered with the Direct under Section 512.57.
(d) “Compensation'” shall include, but need not be limited to, the following:
1. any assignment of insurance proceeds or a percentage thereof;
2. any agreement to make repairs for the amount of the insurance proceeds payable;
3. assertion of any lien against insurance proceeds payable." (Emphasis added.)
215 ILCS 5/512.52 (West 2008).
Illinois courts have consistently held that the Illinois General Assembly’s choice of the word “lien” in the statute indicates its intention to make a lien enforceable against payments which have not yet occurred. Golub and Associates, Inc. v. State Farm Fire and Cas. Co., 406 Ill.App.3d 1195, 943 N.E.2d 95 (2011). Further, no one should be expected to work in a profession that would allow clients to fire the professional after the professional’s services were rendered unless there is an avenue to ensure payment. Id. Thus, public adjusters have the ability to collect compensation in relation to services rendered by and through the filing of a lien against the insured’s property.
If you are a public adjuster in Illinois who is having trouble collecting from insureds, contact Ball & McCann, P.C. today. We have a great deal of experience representing public adjusters across the state, and working tirelessly to collect the compensation they have earned, whether by and through the filing of a lien or otherwise. Stop leaving money on the table, and contact the law firm of Ball & McCann, P.C. today for a free consultation to explore your options moving forward.