The Great Insurance Scam

The Great Insurance Scam………under-insure to force people to settle.

There you have it folks, now would you like the back story?

cabin

Not long ago I wrote THIS post and at the end I wrote an edit which was a rebuttal to a response from our insurance adjuster. I thought I would re-share the thoughts here as it has an “A HA Moment” that every person who holds insurance needs to think about. It outlines how property owners are being vastly under-insured so that they can be bullied into taking inferior settlements. Please have a read and please help “out” this practice in the insurance industry if you or your family have been victimized.

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This entry begins with a response from our adjuster, amazing what you have to do to get a response acknowledging a receipt of an email.

Below is the email we received this evening with names “x”‘d for privacy reasons.

Mr. and Mrs. xxxxxxx,
Please accept this e-mail as confirmation of your prior correspondence and request to have the cabin repaired.
As I stated to Mr. xxxx on the phone I was communicating the decision that Wawanesa did not accept the building quotations presented.
Mr. xxxxx stated he was having a very difficult time in secure builders to quote on the replacement of the cabin.
He stated he was not even getting return calls for requests for quotes.
As explained the quotes to replace based on the total square footage of the structure would be in the category of a full custom home.
The quotes presented have been reviewed by the appraiser on file and submitted to Wawanesa.
I have not ignored your file as you have stated below.
As stated to Mr. xxxxx on the phone and at his request I approached Pxxxxx  yesterday to see if they would be interested in seeing if they would perform repairs at the structure.
I am waiting for their response. As the Representative from Pxxxxxxx needed to review the file and discuss it with management.
Future, I am also waiting for instructions on the file.
At present as both parties seem to be at an impasse as it would related to the quantum of the damages it appears necessary to proceed with the appraisal process as set forth in the Insurance Act.
Please accept this communication as first notice of this process. Our office will forward further written communication with the appropriate forms shortly.
We have made every effort to accommodate your requests. This commenced with a detailed investigation, coverage review and the presentation of timely settlement offer once the second review process was completed.
I have not stated the cabin can be repaired. The determination of repairability is made by construction experts. This the reason why I have spoken to Pxxxxxx. I have not been able to communicate with the project manager with Bxxxxxx at this time as he is not back from vacation.
Mr. Hxxxxxxx stated it is the obligation of the insurer to repair the cabin and to place you back into the same position prior to the loss.
Further I wish to advise that in accordance with the insurance act it is the insured who has to choose their contractor. While we can recommend one the contract for reconstruction rests with you.
Clearly my comments to Mr. Hxxxxxx have been taken out of context and I find it interesting this communication states something different than what our understanding was.
Accordingly future communication will be in writing by e-mail or by way of in person meeting at your brokers office where the meeting can be appropriately documented for the file.
Thank you,

……………………………………………

Followed by the rebuttal:

First we have two hugely detailed quotes in our personal possession for the repair of the cabin stating exactly what needs to be done, provided to us by the insurance adjuster. His chosen professionals. These quotes and scope of work were completed by the two firms mentioned in the email above. “Repairability” has actually already been assessed; it was assessed in the spring of 2015. The quotes were completed by “construction experts” as stated above. This leaves one to question the statements in the above email. If the quotes are valid, it is just a call or email to the contractor to okay the work. It makes me wonder how valid the quotes are. Were they manufactured? We’ll see. My husband has a theory on this, but we will leave it there for now.

Secondly how can insurance simply not accept the quotations? These are the only quotes we could get. We even asked to see the Wawanesa quote, but the request was ignored. Was this Wawanesa quote for a rebuild fictionalized ? We knew their quote was off because we knew how expensive our fireplace was to replace; it is hand laid brick. We were offered $126,725.37 including demo for a TOTAL LOSS; we are insured for $167,000 (and still paying to have the property insured at this level). A difference of $40, 274.63. Demolition is averaging at about $10K, the fireplace averages out at $12.5K. If we take off these two items alone we are left at $104, 225.37, not even enough for a single wide trailer. But beyond that I will share the actual quotes we were given by two contractors that did not know each other (from different cities) and that we do not know from beyond asking for a quote. These quotes are WITHOUT FOUNDATION. Quote #1 – $239, 058.75
and Quote #2 – $259,610.40. You see our cabin is built on post and pier as a foundation so insurance refuses to put a foundation under our cabin. They tell us this over and over. They say it is a “code upgrade”. What it comes down to is even if we achieved a full settlement for what we are insured for, at best we are $72,058.75 short, plus we still need to pay for a foundation. With the settlement of $126,725,37 we are $112,333.38 short. We insured this property trusting our broker and Wawanesa that our investment would be secure if disaster ever struck. Our investment is LOST due to insuring with Wawanesa. Repair is the only way we can attempt any form of salvage of our investment and property.

It is not our fault as an insured that it is difficult to get quotes. (Of course Wawanesa, or the adjuster, refused to share their quote with us.) It is a rural area. Wawanesa insured the property, they knew its location, they took the risk. Remote areas cost more for builds, for service people, for trades. Rural areas lack amenities such as the local hardware store and require added cost regarding travel time and travel costs. It is a one off build, it isn’t a housing development. So when the adjuster says in the email above: “As explained the quotes to replace based on the total square footage of the structure would be in the category of a full custom home.” Yeah, every total loss infill build IS a full custom home……WITHOUT FOUNDATION…..that is a “code upgrade”.

So let’s assess this statement: “Further I wish to advise that in accordance with the insurance act it is the insured who has to choose their contractor. While we can recommend one the contract for reconstruction rests with you.” This is interesting. A few years ago our home suffered sewer back up. Wawanesa was the insurance company. Here is how the discussion went:

– Adjuster – (says to us over the restoration work) – “Do you have a preferred contractor?”,
– Us – “No”.
-Adjuster – “Is it okay if we use xxxxxx?”- us – “Fine.”
– the adjuster dealt with the contractor, the quotes, the work. All we had to do was let the workers in and write the cheque for the deductible. Proper handling. Respectful and professional handling.

Completely different handling. Both water situations, but one is our house and one is our recreational property. One was being tended to within days while our recreational property still hasn’t been tended to 14 months (less two days) from the date of discovery of the damage; it still sits waterlogged. Why the difference in handling? Why are we so under-insured? Why is the settlement offer so below the amount we are paying for when the property is a TOTAL LOSS. There is something very, very wrong.

I am becoming increasing wary and suspicious of the whole situation.  Do you think a contractor will repair our cabin for what is quoted? I doubt it, it seems to be a special “insurance rate”. This is why in the email above the adjuster is trying to wiggle out of responsibility to repair our cabin. That is why he is deferring to the Insurance Act, so that they can cut a cheque and leave us without enough funds for the repair. It is happening all the time, my husband has come home with multiple stories of insureds who have been completely screwed by the company that they trusted.

We can’t remotely rebuild our property even though our broker has time and again run the numbers for what it should be insured for. His numbers come up the same every time. The build quotes are $72,058.75 short without a foundation. Someone is setting these numbers, I don’t know if it is Wawanesa or some other aspect of the insurance industry, but they are vastly wrong. How can a company insure a property, it ends up a full loss, but changes to the building code means it is the insureds fault? They know no one can rebuild. The numbers that we pay insurance for should reflect numbers where a property can be rebuilt to code.

And there is the “A HA Moment”. Did you catch that?

They know no one can rebuild. The numbers that we pay insurance for should reflect numbers where a property can be rebuilt to code.

And there in lies the scam of the insurance industry. If they knowingly under-insure you they know their customer, especially if the adjusters are nasty enough, will eventually cave. It is a scam. It is a scam by the whole insurance industry to make people settle.

Insurance doesn’t protect your investment.

Insurance is there to screw you over and take advantage of you when you are at your lowest.

Wawanesa states on the third page of their 2013 Annual Report the following values:

VALUES
We treat others in a respectful and truthful manner.
We conduct business with integrity, honesty, consistency and fairness.
We act ethically and lawfully.
We take pride in making service a priority.
We encourage collaboration, innovation and excellence.
We support the communities in which we work and live
 
Spot the difference with what we have experienced!
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Please check out your policies, do due diligence, and take issues further and public if you feel victimized. For Alberta this information may be of use:

Alberta Treasury Board and Finance
Superintendent of Insurance
Financial Sector Regulation and Policy (FSRP)
Room 402, Terrace Building
9515 – 107 Street
Edmonton, Alberta, T5K 2C3

PHONE:  780-427-8322

TOLL-FREE:  (In Alberta):  Dial 310-0000, then 780-427-8322

EMAIL:  tbf.insurance@gov.ab.ca

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Wawanesa & Associates Continues To Operate In Bad Faith

blog cabin family

Well it is probably about time for an update on the cabin. I know hundreds upon hundreds of insured people are now reading this saga. How do I know you may ask? Well my husband talks to hundreds upon hundreds (if not thousands) of people dealing with hail claims and he has been passing on our saga to all that will listen. Then I have the people personally emailing me and sharing their own issues. And of course a recent post generated over 94,000 reads and a ton of new followers, so let’s just say, word is out……big time.

So we are on adjuster #2. Thought it might be better. Well I will let you be the judge. We thought it was worth sharing our latest developments here so everyone else will know what tactics Wawanesa are using.

Everyone is being screwed over by insurance at the moment. They are doing unsatisfactory patches instead of replacing siding. They are denying hail when the hail is obvious. They are arguing the square footage of roofs . They are trying to use roofers as adjusters. Even those in the industry are disgusted by some of the tactics.

I do have a website prepped focusing on insurance issues. It is time for us to all out what is going on. Once I make a few modifications to the site it will be up and others will be able to share their mistreatment by the insurance industry. The goal is to bring all these bad experiences together to show systematic corruption and cheating of the insured parties by the insurance industry. I will share the link to the site here once it is fully published, and I invite everyone to share it. We are all getting screwed and it is time to fight back.

For your amusement, here is the latest email that we have sent. You will see just how crooked the insurance industry is. Square footage is misrepresented , and we aren’t even allowed to show our proof of loss….they just didn’t accept it. Anyways, have a read:

Dear xxx,

I am writing to confirm that you received our email of November 3, 2015 indicating we wish to REPAIR our cabin.

I have been advised to confirm this with you as you seem to have a tactic where you choose to ignore certain situations. For instance:

– you chose to ignore our request to see how Wawanesa calculated how much it would cost to rebuild our cabin

– you chose to ignore the fact that Wawanesa had undersized the square footage of our actual cabin and that window sizes were misrepresented in the paperwork

– you chose to not re-adjust the offer for settlement when we pointed out the inaccuracies in size and details

– we provided quotes based WITHOUT foundation and you REFUSED to accept them. We PROVED our loss and you simply said no. Well actually you didn’t just say “no”, you said they were “P.F.O. Quotes”……..PLEASE FUCK OFF QUOTES. Unprofessional. I cannot believe you would treat an insured in such a way.

(and this doesn’t even go into the attempt to depreciate the cabin back to a date prior to it being constructed https://htheblog.wordpress.com/2015/06/02/wawanesa-insurance-problem-how-can-you-be-dinged-for-depreciation-from-before-the-property-was-built/ )

I am attaching the quotes for those cc.’d on here to have as proof that we did prove our loss.

I am reiterating here that you promised our cabin can be repaired, you HAVE a quote that you approve of, and you HAVE a contractor that you approve of. I want to know WHEN WORK WILL COMMENCE. This claim has been in progress since September 2014 and this extended loss of use is unacceptable. Your quote indicates the repair will take 16 weeks which means we need to get on this now. The key to the cabin is in the lock box attached to the cabin provided by YOUR contractor of which you and Wawanesa approve. There is no cause for delay. And as you pointed out over the phone, that prices should be cheaper because of oil being down (evidently out of work riggers are expert construction workers…who knew), I am sure your preferred contractor is able to get on the job right away.

Just to simplify, I need to know when repairs start and the guaranteed completion date, plus where to send our deductible cheque.

I look forward to our cabin being meticulously repaired piece by piece by hand in sub-zero temperatures. I am so glad you gave us this option. And by the way, before we hear anymore threats of “code issues”, electrical and plumbing is circa 2003, as is the back portion of the cabin, and the rest is a “repair”.

Please have the common decency to at least reply to this email as our last one was ignored. Surely acknowledging is part of an adjuster’s duty, or perhaps it was just a “P.F.O” lack of response.

Thanks for reading. And I won’t tell my readers to “P.F.O”.

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November 5, 2015 -6:53 pm Edited to add:

So we have had a response from our adjuster, amazing what you have to do to get a response acknowledging a receipt of an email.

For continuity sake here is the response with names “x”‘d for privacy reasons.

Mr. and Mrs. xxxxxxx,
Please accept this e-mail as confirmation of your prior correspondence and request to have the cabin repaired.
As I stated to Mr. xxxx on the phone I was communicating the decision that Wawanesa did not accept the building quotations presented.
Mr. xxxxx stated he was having a very difficult time in secure builders to quote on the replacement of the cabin.
He stated he was not even getting return calls for requests for quotes.
As explained the quotes to replace based on the total square footage of the structure would be in the category of a full custom home.
The quotes presented have been reviewed by the appraiser on file and submitted to Wawanesa.
I have not ignored your file as you have stated below.
As stated to Mr. xxxxx on the phone and at his request I approached Pxxxxx  yesterday to see if they would be interested in seeing if they would perform repairs at the structure.
I am waiting for their response. As the Representative from Pxxxxxxx needed to review the file and discuss it with management.
Future, I am also waiting for instructions on the file.
At present as both parties seem to be at an impasse as it would related to the quantum of the damages it appears necessary to proceed with the appraisal process as set forth in the Insurance Act.
Please accept this communication as first notice of this process. Our office will forward further written communication with the appropriate forms shortly.
We have made every effort to accommodate your requests. This commenced with a detailed investigation, coverage review and the presentation of timely settlement offer once the second review process was completed.
I have not stated the cabin can be repaired. The determination of repairability is made by construction experts. This the reason why I have spoken to Pxxxxxx. I have not been able to communicate with the project manager with Bxxxxxx at this time as he is not back from vacation.
Mr. Hxxxxxxx stated it is the obligation of the insurer to repair the cabin and to place you back into the same position prior to the loss.
Further I wish to advise that in accordance with the insurance act it is the insured who has to choose their contractor. While we can recommend one the contract for reconstruction rests with you.
Clearly my comments to Mr. Hxxxxxx have been taken out of context and I find it interesting this communication states something different than what our understanding was.
Accordingly future communication will be in writing by e-mail or by way of in person meeting at your brokers office where the meeting can be appropriately documented for the file.
Thank you,

……………………………………………

So I will have my rebuttal here.

First we have two hugely detailed quotes in our personal possession for the repair of the cabin stating exactly what needs to be done, provided to us by the insurance adjuster. His chosen professionals. These quotes and scope of work were completed by the two firms mentioned in the email above. “Repairability” has actually already been assessed; it was assessed in the spring of 2015. The quotes were completed by “construction experts” as stated above. This leaves one to question the statements in the above email. If the quotes are valid, it is just a call or email to the contractor to okay the work. It makes me wonder how valid the quotes are. Were they manufactured? We’ll see. My husband has a theory on this, but we will leave it there for now.

Secondly how can insurance simply not accept the quotations? These are the only quotes we could get. We even asked to see the Wawanesa quote, but the request was ignored. Was this Wawanesa quote for a rebuild fictionalized ? We knew their quote was off because we knew how expensive our fireplace was to replace; it is hand laid brick. We were offered $126,725.37 including demo for a TOTAL LOSS; we are insured for $167,000 (and still paying to have the property insured at this level). A difference of $40, 274.63. Demolition is averaging at about $10K, the fireplace averages out at $12.5K. If we take off these two items alone we are left at $104, 225.37, not even enough for a single wide trailer. But beyond that I will share the actual quotes we were given by two contractors that did not know each other (from different cities) and that we do not know from beyond asking for a quote. These quotes are WITHOUT FOUNDATION. Quote #1 – $239, 058.75
and Quote #2 – $259,610.40. You see our cabin is built on post and pier as a foundation so insurance refuses to put a foundation under our cabin. They tell us this over and over. They say it is a “code upgrade”. What it comes down to is even if we achieved a full settlement for what we are insured for, at best we are $72,058.75 short, plus we still need to pay for a foundation. With the settlement of $126,725,37 we are $112,333.38 short. We insured this property trusting our broker and Wawanesa that our investment would be secure if disaster ever struck. Our investment is LOST due to insuring with Wawanesa. Repair is the only way we can attempt any form of salvage of our investment and property.

It is not our fault as an insured that it is difficult to get quotes. (Of course Wawanesa, or the adjuster, refused to share their quote with us.) It is a rural area. Wawanesa insured the property, they knew its location, they took the risk. Remote areas cost more for builds, for service people, for trades. Rural areas lack amenities such as the local hardware store and require added cost regarding travel time and travel costs. It is a one off build, it isn’t a housing development. So when the adjuster says in the email above: “As explained the quotes to replace based on the total square footage of the structure would be in the category of a full custom home.” Yeah, every total loss infill build IS a full custom home……WITHOUT FOUNDATION…..that is a “code upgrade”.

So let’s assess this statement: “Further I wish to advise that in accordance with the insurance act it is the insured who has to choose their contractor. While we can recommend one the contract for reconstruction rests with you.” This is interesting. A few years ago our home suffered sewer back up. Wawanesa was the insurance company. Here is how the discussion went:

– Adjuster – (says to us over the restoration work) – “Do you have a preferred contractor?”,
– Us – “No”.
-Adjuster – “Is it okay if we use xxxxxx?”- us – “Fine.”
– the adjuster dealt with the contractor, the quotes, the work. All we had to do was let the workers in and write the cheque for the deductible. Proper handling. Respectful and professional handling.

Completely different handling. Both water situations, but one is our house and one is our recreational property. One was being tended to within days while our recreational property still hasn’t been tended to 14 months (less two days) from the date of discovery of the damage; it still sits waterlogged. Why the difference in handling? Why are we so under-insured? Why is the settlement offer so below the amount we are paying for when the property is a TOTAL LOSS. There is something very, very wrong.

I am becoming increasing wary and suspicious of the whole situation.  Do you think a contractor will repair our cabin for what is quoted? I doubt it, it seems to be a special “insurance rate”. This is why in the email above the adjuster is trying to wiggle out of responsibility to repair our cabin. That is why he is deferring to the Insurance Act, so that they can cut a cheque and leave us without enough funds for the repair. It is happening all the time, my husband has come home with multiple stories of insureds who have been completely screwed by the company that they trusted.

We can’t remotely rebuild our property even though our broker has time and again run the numbers for what it should be insured for. His numbers come up the same every time. The build quotes are $72,058.75 short without a foundation. Someone is setting these numbers, I don’t know if it is Wawanesa or some other aspect of the insurance industry, but they are vastly wrong. How can a company insure a property, it ends up a full loss, but changes to the building code means it is the insureds fault? They know no one can rebuild. The numbers that we pay insurance for should reflect numbers where a property can be rebuilt to code.

And there is the “A HA Moment”. Did you catch that?

They know no one can rebuild. The numbers that we pay insurance for should reflect numbers where a property can be rebuilt to code.

And there in lies the scam of the insurance industry. If they knowingly under-insure you they know their customer, especially if the adjusters are nasty enough, will eventually cave. It is a scam. It is a scam by the whole insurance industry to make people settle.

Insurance doesn’t protect your investment.

Insurance is there to screw you over and take advantage of you when you are at your lowest.

Wawanesa states on the third page of their 2013 Annual Report the following values:

VALUES
We treat others in a respectful and truthful manner.
We conduct business with integrity, honesty, consistency and fairness.
We act ethically and lawfully.
We take pride in making service a priority.
We encourage collaboration, innovation and excellence.
We support the communities in which we work and live
 
Spot the difference with what we have experienced!
————
And just to address one other statement in the above email, the adjuster states “Clearly my comments to Mr. Hxxxxxx have been taken out of context and I find it interesting this communication states something different than what our understanding was.” Could someone please tell me how anyone can take out of context  “PLEASE FUCK OFF QUOTES“? That was a pretty clear and pretty inappropriate comment.
Stay tuned.

 

 

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Wawanesa Insurance problem….how can you be dinged for depreciation from before the property was built?

blog snowy cabin_3878

It’s the ongoing saga…….can anyone figure this out for me……..

We got an email May 19th 2015 from the new adjuster, it included this phrase…..

blog cabin 1…..so we phone up the Lac Ste. Anne County Office, the county in which the cabin resides, and ask “What year was the cabin built?”

(crossing our “t”‘s and dotting our “i”‘s)

The answer 1963.

Anyone spot the problem?

For the cabin to be depreciated 55 years it would have had to be built in 1960…….it wasn’t built until 1963.

Wawanesa Insurance is trying to depreciate a property for 3 years BEFORE THE PROPERTY EVEN EXISTED.

Problem?

perhaps

Stay tuned…..there is so much more.

( I suspect this post is the pre-game warm up!)

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Some Humor and Some Good News

blog bax artAs today’s post is a bit more “happy”, I decided to put my art department (A.K.A. three youngest children) to work to provide the graphics for this post. Their brief was to draw a happy colorful person. They all did quite well and each piece of artwork has its own special charm.

blog sox artSo we will start with the good news, we received back the testing for asbestos for the tile in our cabin, and the news is good, no asbestos in the original floor. That is a huge relief. We watched my husband’s mum die of lung cancer so the thought of having been in contact with asbestos was terrifying. Excellent result and the first thing to go right. I am posting the report below (names blurred out), just so I have an easy way of finding the report if needed. Blogs are an interesting way of documenting your life.

blog asbestos reportIt is funny how as this palaver of the cabin insurance situation continues we are finding a slightly warped sense of humor is forming. Today my eldest son was in a mood when we cut off screen time; our kids turn into weird little zombies when they have too much tech time (see they should take up proper amusements like spinning wool!). Upon “technology cutoff”  he responded “You’re treating me like I’m an insurance company.” Hmmmmm.

blog bex art

Once we recovered from a rather lengthy bout of laughter I said to my husband  (in hushed tones), “I have a confession to make.”. He leaned in with a serious look on his face to listen as I continued with my thought. “Every time I deal with someone at Wawanesa Insurance I can’t help but imagine them as a Bond villain.” With a smile and a flash of the iPad he responded with “Like this?!”

 https://i2.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c3/Blofeldpleasance67.jpg(Blofeld information and photo credit found here.)

At least one good thing comes from my imagining this, that Wawanesa is a “pet friendly” organization (and a huge purchaser of lint rollers!)

 Now of course the discussion didn’t stop there, we imagined Wawanesa as a health insurance provider…………and anyone with a Pythonesque view of the world knows exactly what came next…………any serious injury would be “it’s only a flesh wound”. At least we are keeping our sense of humor!

https://38.media.tumblr.com/63fe4898e28af0b21b6f348b92d7483b/tumblr_my6q41tuOe1ss9fgwo3_500.gif

This evening my husband and I also had a walk down memory lane discussing past insurance experiences. My husband actually wrote them down, perhaps in anticipation of serial blog posts. I am thinking he is correct, a series on our experiences would be of great value to the general public. We’ve also heard a few interesting insurance stories “on the playground” which are sure to amuse or infuriate you. So stay tuned for those upcoming posts, they’ll pop up from time to time.

I’ll leave you with a LINK to a list of Bond Villains.………..bet you can hear the theme music in your head……I can, its my ring tone!

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The ads on this page belong to “WordPress”…..the Monty Python references are purely my fault!

Wawanesa Thinks (potential) Asbestos and Families is a Great Mix! (Twice!!!)

Is your insurance company putting your health at risk?

Is your insurance company putting you, the insured, in harm’s way due to their policies?

These are questions you never thought you would ponder when dealing with house insurance, but this is exactly what we are dealing with now.

Remember all the problems we have had with Wawanesa and their HANDLING of our insurance claim? You can view the posts here and here . This led to Wawanesa forcing us to do THIS if we had any hope of a claim. The “THIS” was us, the amateurs, completely opening up the cabin to look for a cause for the water damage as the professionals that looked at the cabin in October 2014 refused to look. At that time we thought having the insured strip back a building full of water, and opening up walls potentially full of electrical and water, was both insane and lacked ethics and business common sense. I remember saying to our broker, while sitting in our broker’s office “Do they want to kill us?”. He said no, yet was puzzled by the handling of our claim by Wawanesa.

Luckily the mix of electrical and water didn’t electrocute us and our five children on the spot. Perhaps this was a great disappointment to Wawanesa, perhaps not. Yet now we realize we aren’t “out of the woods”. Now we are dealing with the potential of EXPOSURE TO ASBESTOS due to Wawanesa’s handling of our claim.

wawanesa insurance makes homeowner do own exploration 2Remember this picture? This picture was in the blog post discussing our visit to the cabin on November 23, 2014. This picture was also sent in a set of four DVD’s sent to Wawanesa offices in both Edmonton, Alberta and Winnipeg, Manitoba (head office). This picture shows where my husband has fallen through old tiles that were hidden under the laminate when we were forced by Wawanesa to do our own exploration on our cabin if we wanted any hope of making a claim. We had to try, you need to protect your investment.

Last Saturday, February 21st 2015, we went back to the cabin with a new adjuster, restoration crew, and engineer to take another look at our cabin. They started to look for access points to look at the foundation to see just what was happening under floor level (makes sense)………. and then we hit a snag. They noticed the tiles. Tiles of a certain age, an age when some tiles contained asbestos. The engineer has a mask on. The adjuster has a mask on. My husband, myself and the restoration crew DID NOT HAVE MASKS ON. Exploring through the floor stops; they can’t cut until they know “if” there is asbestos in the tile.

They bag a sample of the tile. They tell us we will know in two days if there was asbestos in the tile.

The sample was bagged on February 21st, 2015. It was a weekend so realistically I thought we would hear by end of the day on Tuesday (February 24th). We received no phone call or email.

On Wednesday….no call or email.

On Thursday….no call or email.

On Friday….no call or email.

On Saturday, a week later, not two days as initially mentioned….no call or email.

The silence is deafening. Why aren’t we hearing the result?

I admit I am quite anxious to know if we are dealing with asbestos. We picked these tiles up with our hands, I fell through them (thus laid down on all these crumbling broken tiles), our children shuffled over them. If there is asbestos this is very, very bad.

Here is the Government of Canada’s information sheet on asbestos.

Here is what the Government of Canada indicates the health risks are:

When inhaled in significant quantities, asbestos fibres can cause asbestosis (a scarring of the lungs which makes breathing difficult), mesothelioma (a rare cancer of the lining of the chest or abdominal cavity) and lung cancer.

It doesn’t sound good does it?

Imagine “if” it is asbestos our whole family, including five children aged 4,7,10,12 and 16 , have been exposed.

blog cabin family

The potential to be placed in a position of exposure once is bad enough.

An insurance company should NEVER place their insured in a situation where their health and well being are compromised. That is unethical and morally irresponsible no matter what the fine print in a policy states. (By the way, as of today we still have no proof as to where the water came from that damaged the cabin, but the rusted screw directly in front of the drain pipe where the worst damage occurred is awfully suspicious.)

blog drainpipe_9360 detail 1blog drainpipe_9360

Putting the insured in harm’s way for a SECOND time is inexcusable. But that is exactly what Wawanesa did.

Wawanesa could argue “we didn’t know there was tile” with regards to our visit on November 23rd, 2014. Yes they knew we were dealing with a dangerous mix of electrical and water, but their justification was probably “At least it will kill them quick!”. Not a problem in the eyes of insurance. They were probably hoping a good electrocution would kill us and our kids so no survivors could come after them in a lawsuit. My guess is the goal was extermination.

However Wawanesa sent us into the cabin for a SECOND time KNOWING there was a potential risk that we would be exposed to ASBESTOS.

On February 21st, 2015 we attended the cabin with the adjuster and his crew, while Wawanesa KNEW the property contained old tile with the potential risk of containing asbestos. How did they know? Well first there was the picture in the blog post. Hundreds upon hundreds of you have seen it. Secondly I sent a set of four DVD’s sent to Wawanesa offices in both Edmonton, Alberta and Winnipeg, Manitoba  that contained video and stills of the area, video that actually included me falling through these tiles that have a potential to contain asbestos. The tiles are clearly visible, the tiles are clearly the vintage of potentially containing asbestos, yet Wawanesa ignores the fact that this building product has the potential to be incredibly harmful and sends us to the property for a second exposure to a potentially hazardous material. Wawanesa are in the business of assessing risk, risk involved with properties, plus risk involved with health and well being with regards to Wawanesa Life, yet they CHOSE to put the INSURED AT RISK.

Wawanesa must hate their customers so much that if electrocution doesn’t work, that they they consciously choose to put their clients in contact with substances known to cause cancer. Are Wawanesa hoping for a slow, painful agonizing death?

So Wawanesa hates their insured, the people that allow them to makes millions or billions in profits, I get that . It is blatantly obvious. I’m still paying my monthly premiums on three residences, a business and a vehicle just so that I can have the pleasure of having the option of either being electrocuted or die of cancer at the hands of the handling of our insurance claim by Wawanesa. I know sadomasochism is “in”, it’s “50 Shades of Wawanesa”…….now we know where a former CBC radio host could be working. But not only did they put us in a potentially hazardous situation for a second time, they also put the workers with the restoration crew. They also were in the property, with broken crumbling ancient tiles, breathing in air with the potential to contain asbestos. This is how Wawanesa treats their trades. Are the tradespeople  also disposable to Wawanesa?

Wawanesa had the video and the pictures of the tile (at the Edmonton AND Head Office in Winnipeg) and they CHOSE to send the insured and the trades into a potentially hazardous situation.

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One last little tidbit. When we had our case assigned to a new adjuster my husband asked if he had all the information as to what had happened with this property. He replied that he had a file two inches thick. On Saturday February 21st, 2015 we discovered he had NEVER BEEN GIVEN THE VIDEO. Wawanesa is back to their old tricks of manipulating a situation. They WITHHELD  the video which showed all the exploration including the POTENTIALLY HAZARDOUS TILE. If Wawanesa had been honest and transparent and had given the new adjuster all the information the new adjuster could have prevented both my husband and myself, and the restoration crew from entering a potentially toxic zone. But Wawanesa chose to continue to play their games.

Wawanesa can’t be trusted.

Wawanesa chooses to put their insured in harm’s way.

Wawanesa values profits over people.

“If property insurance doesn’t protect your property or investment why have it? Then it is just a scam.”

Food for thought.

I encourage others to learn from our experience and evaluate the company you are insured with. No one should have to go through what we have.

I wonder “if” and “when” we will find out if the tiles contain asbestos.

 

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Saturday, Saga, Site, Shock, Snow, and Shopping

blog snow_3889 aToday’s blog post is brought to you by the LETTER S.

(teeth together, smile, make the snake sound……too many kids in speech therapy)

I thought I would put a Sesame Street spin on today’s blog post with the hope of adding some whimsy, as life in general isn’t feeling so whimsical.

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Saga – we are still dealing with the ongoing saga of our cabin and its damages. The way the whole situation has been dealt with has left me seething and quite honestly spiteful. Perhaps I am unreasonable in thinking people should be dealt with in a decent and professional manner. Now I am not one to sit around feeling sorry for themselves, sometimes it is just better to channel your energy into a solution, so last night I decided to create a site (website) which will help others to publicly out all the problems they are having dealing with the insurance industry. It is amazing what can be accomplished with four hours of time, five cups of tea and a lot of frustration from dealing with the insurance industry. The site is ready to go live, has interactive elements, plus I have worked out a way to make an income off it as well. One more unprofessional move by our insurance company is all it will take to set me off and then it will hit the good old world wide web. I feel happy having this in my arsenal….plus it has the potential to be a nice little business….funny how a bad insurance dealing can inspire you to create a business opportunity.

blog sites_3975Shock – continuing with the cabin theme, today we had a shock….or potential shock. Remember my post from November ? Well the insurance company is looking at the cabin again. Different adjuster. Different contractors. They really looked this time at the situation which is a step forward. Today’s experience was professional. Now if you read my post from November you will remember me mentioning that we had to do our own exploration for insurance purposes, and an incident with tiles. Old tiles. I felt uncomfortable about the tiles in November, but now we are plain shocked. The tiles are being sent for asbestos testing. You don’t get a good feeling when people in masks are bagging a piece of tile for asbestos testing when just a few months ago you were picking the tiles up with your hands, not wearing masks and your children are sitting feet away from shattering tiles. This was part of the exploration we were told to do by the insurance industry. They’ve also told us to not do anything else in the cabin for now. So now on top of worry about the damage to the cabin, we get to worry about damage to our health; mine, my husband’s and our 5 children’s health. This is the nightmare that never ends.

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Snow – the one bonus today was we had the opportunity to view some lovely rural scenery that was crisply coated with snow. It is still deepish in spots, but not the insane amount of snow we had last year. Taking some snowy landscapes was one positive thing that happened today.

blog shiverShivering – yep, this morning en route to the cabin I checked the weather, -19C with windchill. I checked it a little later in the day and it read -21C with windchill. Thank goodness the sun was out or it would have been brutal. The sun made all the difference. I will say the trip to the local outhouse was “crisp”.

blog shopping 2Shopping – our kids were hankering Ikea for supper so we detoured into Edmonton for a quick shop and supper. Everyone stopped in their tracks at the sight of the above picture of “Oat pastry with coconut”. Perhaps something was lost in translation, but there is nothing that makes me want to try an “oat pastry”. The picture didn’t sell its tastiness either. I am thinking there is a reason it is on sale!

blog shopping 1We did pick up a couple of items at Ikea and one of them was in the self-serve area. Now if you aren’t familiar with Ikea, they have these little cards and pencils so that you can write down the aisle that the product you need is in. Our seven year old was carrying the card and pencil and my husband told her the aisle number and asked her to write it down on the card. This was another event where something was lost in translation as she decided to DRAW the item. Looks just like Ikea’s instructions don’t you think?!

Supper – we had Harvey’s burgers……………we just couldn’t get past the concept of “Oat pastry with coconut”.

Thank you for reading my blog post brought to you by the LETTER S!

(I’ve clearly watched too much kid T.V.!)

November 23, 2014 – Trip to the cabin.

Our Trip To The Cabin

reason: Wawanesa REFUSED to do ANY exploration on our insurance claim. Wawanesa even used a reason NOT in the report (a report produced by their associates for the purpose of assessing the claim)  to deny it as did the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds Service……so WE, the ill equipped and uneducated insured, had to do this dangerous work completely ourselves. A cause was manufactured between the report being written and the denial letter being written. Manufactured out of thin air.

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time: we left home at 9 am, worked solid at the cabin, ate dinner at 9:50 pm (no lunch) and returned home at 12:17 AM (a 15 hour work day….with our children)

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temperature: below zero, freezing temperatures in an unheated building

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cast: my husband, myself, and our 5 children. One child had no feeling in their feet. One child was so cold they curled up into a ball and fell asleep. One child was panicked that the cabin would collapse on them. Wawanesa expects their insured to carry out their own exploration with their children in unsafe buildings.

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safety: four different people fell through the floor including one very bad fall and our 10 year old daughter FALLING THROUGH THE FLOOR. We were expected to deal with slicing open  walls concealing electrical and water, deal with mold, debris, falls, rusty nails, insulation, ice, water, and there was also some very old tile (that may or may not contain asbestos…it would be from “that” era). This is with 5 children roaming around in a freezing cold building. Clearly safety isn’t one of Wawanesa’s top concerns, denying claims on items NOT EVEN IN THE REPORT is their main focus.

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just for fun: Wawanesa delayed dealing with this claim until it was so late in the year that we wouldn’t have water to prove the claim because our water is seasonal (manipulative?) . They also delayed it so long that we are unable to fix the situation, claim or not, jeopardizing and compromising our investment through their petty manipulative ways. By the way, we were forced to do this NOW as the report Wawanesa accepted had LIES about when we discovered the problem. We discovered the problem on September 7, 2014….the report said “approximately 2 years ago”. I even have a blog post up showing discovery. Perhaps not “fun” but very dishonest business.

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Stay tuned…………..if Wawanesa continues to ignore us there WILL be video…..a lot of video…..

(it shows exactly what they are putting us through as they REFUSED to do exploration even though they sent out a restoration crew who on site REFUSED to look further…….I sense a lot of YouTube in my future…….if a picture is worth 1000 words, a video also adds 1000 emotions and a whole lot of context and reality)

PROBLEMS WITH WAWANESA INSURANCE?

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PS. By the way we have been told TWICE that we HAD to do our OWN EXPLORATION. The first time was by the Townsend & Leedham adjuster,hired out by Wawanesa, on September 29, 2014. The second is indicated in the letter from the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds Service that states “”If YOU are able to determine that the loss is not……” etc. ….after all the construction professionals supplied by the insurance industry refused to LOOK.

One more PS. …..two interesting things, first the letter from the Ombuds Service isn’t SIGNED by anyone, no one would take responsibility. Second, the independent adjuster didn’t forward all the clauses in our insurance policy to us, only items 7-12, concealing the rest. The independent adjuster went through our policy, tried to find a clause to get them out of the claim, even though it WAS NOT in the report, and then consciously conceals the rest of our policy from us so that we can not see what is actually covered. MANIPULATION or CORRUPT…you choose (I’m easy going).

If you want to read more about this situation click HERE (the discovery)

and HERE (the October 5th post)

and HERE ( lies on the insurance report……..we found even more today!!!)

and HERE (and the Ombuds Service collaborates without ever seeing the property…and a real person doesn’t even sign the letter!)

Oh, and one more little thing…….if our suspicions are right, we “followed the water”, we now suspect why we only had one septic pump out this year (compared to three or four in previous years)…….just a hunch…..but then we can’t “prove” it as WAWANESA manipulated the situation so that we would have no water to prove the claim.

Can you think of any other reason it takes 3 weeks to get an adjuster out to look at an interior water claim?….and that has happened TWICE with this claim….they consciously delayed the process knowing that the water would do more and more damage ……just saying…….the calendar doesn’t lie….6 weeks of delays……for interior lying water. We couldn’t “secure” the situation because they had to “see” the water. We were forced by Wawanesa to let our property deteriorate.