Author Archives: Patricia Preciado

Florida Panhandle Struggles to Recover from Hurricane Michael

Thousands are still struggling to recover from Hurricane Michael in the Florida Panhandle. The Category 5 storm left 22,000 of Bay County’s residents homeless and few affordable living spaces available. With nearly $7 billion in total insurance losses, about 1 in 6 insurance claims remain unresolved. There is reportedly a mental health crisis and a shortage of healthcare professionals as well.

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Hurricanes, Property (Homeowners)

UPDATE: Roofer Convicted of Insurance Fraud in Duval Charged with Grand Theft in Clay

Jacksonville roofer Roger Van Den Bosch has been officially charged with grand theft in Clay County, just months after pleading guilty to insurance fraud, forgery and theft. In May, the Kinnecorps owner was convicted in Duval County and ordered to pay more than $50,000 in restitution, serve probation and do community service.

Prosecutors are now focusing on a Van Den Bosch’s felony grand theft charge, which he plead not guilty to in a case involving a Clay County homeowner.

Click here to read the article. (Previous post)

Filed under Fraud, Property (Homeowners)

UPDATE: New Charges Filed Against Jacksonville Contractor & Suspected Fraudster

Eighteen new charges have been filed against Jacksonville contractor, Wyatt Green. Green was arrested in April on charges of organized fraud, forgery and grand theft. The list of Green’s victims has grown from a handful to 19. Homeowners contacted I-TEAM saying that their insurance companies had paid Storm RS to make repairs to their homes that were never completed.

Click here to read the article. (Previous post)

Filed under Fraud, Property (Homeowners)

Florida Supreme Court Dismisses Review of Assignment of Benefits Dispute

A divided Florida Supreme Court discharged jurisdiction and dismissed the review proceeding of an assignment of benefits case due to a law that was passed this spring revamping the AOB system.

According to court documents, the policyholders, John and Liza Squitieri assigned benefits to Restoration 1 to clean up water damage in their home. However, their insurance company Ark Royal Insurance Co. refused to pay the full amount. Restoration 1 sued Ark Royal for breach of contract but lost in circuit court and appeals court.

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Legislation, Property (Homeowners)

New Claims Technology to Tackle Increased Water Damage Claims

There have been a lot more claims for water damage than wind damage in recent years, including the trillions of gallons of water Texas experienced when Hurricane Harvey hit in 2017. Since that time, water damage claims have gone up each year, representing more than 50% of hurricane claims.

Here are a few of the new technologies in the following areas are being used to help combat this uptick in water and flood loss:

  • Faster, easier and better-targeted forms of communication
  • Faster estimating
  • Virtual inspections
  • Damaged item valuation
  • Smarter vendor selection using data and analytics

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Property (Homeowners)

10 Unlicensed Workers Arrested in Fraud Sting

Florida Department of Financial Services and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office launched ‘Operation Stonewall,’ a three-day fraud sting to catch contractors allegedly agreeing to perform work without the required licenses and proper workers’ compensation insurance coverage.

Ten individuals were arrested in the fraud sting and could serve up to 5 years in prison if convicted.

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Property (Homeowners)

17 Unlicensed Contractors Arrested in Sarasota County Sting Operation

Sarasota law enforcement partnered with the Sarasota County Building Department, the Florida Department of Financial Services Division of Insurance Fraud and the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation on a sting operation to bust seventeen people who were allegedly doing unlicensed contract work.

During the three-day operation, detectives waited to see if the potential workers were licensed, registered, and insured to perform the work. The sting resulted in 17 arrests with 21 felony charges and 15 misdemeanor charges.

Click here for the news story.

Filed under Property (Homeowners)

Contractor and Suspected Fraudster Prohibited from Betting While Case is Ongoing

The News4Jax I-TEAM spotted Wyatt Green, a Jacksonville contractor suspected of insurance fraud, betting thousands in a Best Bet poker room while out on bond. Green was just arrested and charged with felony forgery, fraud, and grand theft a month ago.

Green and his team are accused of taking insurance money meant to pay for customers’ repairs, but not completing the work. The State Attorney’s Office changed his bond conditions as a result of the I-TEAM investigation, keeping him from betting or gambling while his case is ongoing.

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Fraud, Property (Homeowners)

Miami-Dade Public Adjusters Facing Charges for Insurance Fraud Ring

Public adjuster Barbara Gonzalez and at least eight more suspects were arrested in insurance fraud ring in Miami-Dade. Gonzalez ran a public adjusting company Rubicon Group and the alleged ringleader of the fraud scheme.

Gonzalez’s charges include a $75,000 claim for fake water damage and repairs from a plumber that did not exist. She is also on the hook for three other false damage claims dating back to 2013.

Click here to read the article.

Filed under Fraud, Property (Homeowners)

Duval County Public Schools Principal Arrested for Insurance Fraud

Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis announced the arrest of Darrell Perry, a Jacksonville elementary school principal for allegedly trying to submit altered insurance claims and false invoices for over $16,000 in the wake of Hurricane Irma. Investigators found Perry submitted fraudulent and fabricated repair invoices requesting reimbursement from State Farm due to alleged damages from Hurricane Irma.  Perry has turned himself in and now faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

Click here to read the press release.

Filed under Fraud, Property (Homeowners)