What's going on with UPPA Claims?
We’ve been seeing a big upswing in UPPA claims against contractors arising from information located on their website, Facebook, business cards, and marketing materials. And, to make matters worse, the kind of language that has been deemed to be a violation (a) is not language that would be an obvious violation, including something as innocent as “helping you with” and (b) is ever expanding. To help guard against an inadvertent violation, we recommend any contractor working in a state with a UPPA law that doesn’t also hold a UPPA license include language similar to this on its website:
UPPA DISCLAIMER: “[Contractor] is not a Public Insurance Adjuster and is not providing or offering to provide public adjusting services to its customers. As such, nothing you may read on this website or in any of our other materials should be construed as a promise to negotiate your claim. The information and services provided by [Contractor] are limited to evaluating and discussing damage, repair scope and pricing, and then, once approved, making those repairs to the property.”
What does this disclaimer do?
This disclaimer is not a substitute for having your marketing materials “scrubbed” of obviously improper language, but will put anyone accessing your website on notice of the limitations of your services, making it much more difficult to claim that they were “fooled into” believing you were offering to negotiate their claim.
Now for my own disclaimer: Note that this recommendation is made by a Texas attorney who has the honor of representing a number of Texas Storm Restoration Contractors. This is general advice/food for thought and not specific legal advice for any particular company or individual. Please consult with your own attorney on whether you should implement this suggestion.
If our firm can be of assistance on this topic or any other, please feel free to call or email.
Ensley Benitez Law