Skip to comments.Staten Island couple fights for their future [Angry at INSURANCE company...not Obama's Ineptitude]
Posted on 01/08/2013 5:54:03 AM PST by SoFloFreeper
... Sheila and Dominic Traina of New Dorp Beach have become the Staten Island poster family for Hurricane Sandy....
...[The Occupier of the Oval Office] walked down their block, he heard about their plight firsthand, and wrote a note to the couples grandchildren promising them he would help...
The couple recently turned down a $10,000 payout from AllState, their insurance carrier for the 43 years they lived in the house, saying it was vastly inadequate...
They describe their local AllState agent as very insensitive to their view of what happened and to their overall concerns. And theyre upset that an image of their house was used as a marketing tool and that no one from AllState sought their permission....
(Excerpt) Read more at silive.com ...
The ALLSTATE insurance corporation is depicted as the evil player in this drama. But an important note that was mentioned in passing in the tv report I saw was that the couple had CANCELED THEIR FLOOD INSURANCE.
Yet this article doesn't mention that fact...
The tv report DID mention these two are BIG fans of Obama, and don't blame him for the lack of help he promised them in writing. Keep in mind, the clown is worth MILLIONS. He could pay for a new house for them and NEVER miss the money.
But no media coverage of Obama and FEMA and the failure of the feds to step up.
My husband and I happened to talk to a man just last night who is in the home construction and repair business who had gone to a small part of New Jersey to help out an insurance company with claims adjusting after Sandy. He said that many people out there do not have flood insurance, and would try to tell him that the 70 mph winds had moved their homes off their foundations (not the flood water) in order to force the insurance companies to pay for the damage.
In the spring of 1998, we went through two big hail and wind storms in the Twin Cities area. Our insurance was from St. Paul Fire and Marine and they paid for all the damage to our cars, roof and windows.
We learned a good lesson; cheap insurance, like Allstate, is worth exactly what you pay for it.
But for one family, its not just the money that has them upset.
The couple’s Staten Island home was destroyed by Sandy and they said their insurance company, Allstate, is refusing to pay their full claim, offering a $10,000 dollar payout instead.
We didn’t sign it, we didn’t cash it and we don’t even want $10,000. That’s a joke, said Dominic Traina.
At the same time Allstate recently featured the Traina’s destroyed home in a television ad, thanking employees who were also affected by the storm.
You used our house that you were caring. This is not caring. This is a money thing, said Sheila Traina.
The Traina’s said Allstate concluded their home was damaged by flooding. They don’t have flood insurance.
They canceled it several years ago. But the Trainas believe their home was damaged by wind, not the storm surge.
We know what our neighbor had told us, that the wind hit it and knocked it down, said Dominic Traina.
This really is a lesson in making sure you have all the appropriate insurance, even if it costs more. You can’t just sign a policy and assume you are covered. You have to discuss the exemptions with the agent and then get more. This is where a good broker can help because they will tell you exactly what you have.
The media does distort stories like this. In their world, this couple should get 100% coverage even if they have a cheap policy. That’s like buying tickets for the cheap seats at the ballgame and demanding to be seated in the box seats.
As an aside, I have a family member who got “cheap” car insurance. He got in a bad accident where he hit two cars, a sign and went through a fence onto a golf course. His insurance ran out after the second claim and he had two or three parties suing him. He thought he was getting screwed too.
I hate to sound like a commercial but - I’ve had AMICA house and auto insurance since 1968 and in all those years I’ve been through car accidents, ice storms, wind storms, etc., and they have never let me down.
Just couldn’t pass this without a comment. I have been insured with Allstate for at least 57 years and they have handled any clains I have had in a very orderly and business like fashion. It would be unusual for an insurance company not to pay what is covered on the policy.
Water damage is one thing and wind damage is another and if you don’t have the coverage , they are not going to pay. Get a good Agent, regardless of the company you buy from and all companies have both.
You can sit in the barber shop and listen to someone bad mouth an insurance company but if you don’t hear both sides of the argument you can’t make a proper evaluation of the situation.
My experience has been that with large storms you do not deal with a local agent,
The insurance company sends in adjusters from all over the country and they could care less about you, unlike your local agent, who has to deal with you after the adjusters are gone.
I’ve had great experiences with Allstate. A car ran into my house and my agent was out with a contractor early the next morning.. Fixed in a week.. They refunded my deductible when they were reimbursed by the culprit.
They fixed my garage, pool, and car when my wife forgot how to drive (don’t ask).. Again, excellent service..
As my agent says, buy the flood insurance, it’s cheap as I’m not in a flood plain, but I live in Houston and I’ve been through 2 hurricanes - I’ve been lucky, neighbors not so much...
I’m curious if any freepers have had claims with their flood insurance and how well it pays? I recall these same issues when Hurricane Ike hit Galveston a few years ago - some folks are still fighting with insurance companies. It is idiotic for anyone along a coast line not to have flood insurance and that idiot Harry Reid should be raked over the coals by the media for his stupid comments comparing sandy to katrina. But the media will not mention it because he’s a liberal.
We have earthquake insurance in Eastern Kansas because we have a three story chimney. It only costs us about $20.00 a year. And everyone should go through their house and take photos of valuables, get them appraised, and index them with their homeowners. I had jewelry stolen in a break-in. The jewelry that wasn’t indexed I hardly got anything but the one ring that was I got full value.
I spent forty years in the insurance industry, life, health, property & casualty and most insurance companies have no objection to paying legitimate claims. I was in a meeting once with the Group Senior Vice President of claims for a major insurer (fortune 100 company). He explained to me that for 200 years the company had made a good living playing by the rules. As a side note he was an ordained minister as well.
If you are properly insured, your claims will be paid. There is long established and scientifically sound forensic studies that will determine whether damage is caused by wind, rain or flood. No private company underwrites flood coverage completely; most companies simply act as agents for FEMA for flood insurance. The claims are managed by the company and paid by FEMA.
I can see one thing inevitably arising from the mess with Sandy: Since private insurers are so blatantly incapable of pleasing everybody, the gov’t will need to step in and pool all private insurance under the FEMA flag, as they do with flood insurance. A gov’t agency generates a HUGE mountain of cash, evil greedy capitalist insurance companies are put out of business and the gov’t saves people from their own bad decisions once again. I can smell it in the air.
The fact that people live in these areas should not cast a huge expense upon the taxpayers to protect their property through beach and dune rebuilding. This couple complained for years about the imminent threat, yet failed to carry flood insurance - that is just ludicrous. The earth changes - water gets displaced. As volcanic islands are created in the oceans, the water is displaced elsewhere. As fault lines create ridges in the oceans, the water flows elsewhere. The fallacy that the oceans should maintain the same shorelines in perpetuity is just ignorant.
My daughter’s father-in-law is an architect/engineer who designs custom “colonial style” buildings, i.e., buildings that use techniques and materials available in 1700’s. (Okay, it’s a small market.) He is also a claims adjuster for certain insurance companies. When a storm hits New England and damages colonial era buildings, or recreations like Old Sturbridge Village, or hoity-toity colonial era replica homes, he goes and makes the adjustments. He says he has never had is estimates (or expense reports) challenged by the insurance companies and has never felt any pressure to low ball estimates. He just gives them an honest estimate.
I applaud your Daughter’s Father In Law. I can only speak from my experience.
But someone forgot to give the talking points to the caption-er for the photograph:
Dominic and Sheila Traina behind their washed out Deli on Cedar Grove Avenue in New Dorp Beach after Hurricane Sandy brought a destructive tidal surge.
Of course, a 70-mph wind isn't going to knock any reasonably-built home off a foundation. A wind gust would have first ripped off the shingles and siding. Looking at the house behind them, it appears the roof is intact.
I guess I should point out that their argument is that, before the storm surge pushed their house into the street, a wind gust tore off part of their roof.
They claim their neighbor saw it happen and called them.
I would expect that if the neighbor is willing to sign an affidavit to the claim that the roof was torn off before the flood, the insurance company will pay for the roof damage.
The article also points out that the house was later pushed out of the street by a large truck, making it hard to tell what damage was caused by what part of the storm.
Most of the article was typical whiny liberal crap. They want the EPA to fix all the environmental damage caused by erosion of old properties which used to be where the beach is now, and they ALSO want government to pay to protect THEIR property from nature, probably by human construction which otherwise the environmentalists would scream about.
They were also upset that the community built a park for children to play in, rather than spending tax dollars to reconstruct the shoreline to protect their home.
And, as the article and people here point out — they railed about the certainty of a flood for years, but dropped their flood insurance.
Anyway, it doesn’t look like they are trying to collect for the entire cost of rebuilding their house, just what they think is a fair cost for the damage done before the flood hit.
We have some friends that got flooded when Lake Travis went over 700 MSL back in 1991. The insurance company came out after the lake dropped and they got a full settlement.
Several years ago the LCRA has raised the pool level to 690 instead of 680 MSL and the insurance company sent them a notice that they are no longer covered for flooding.
We don't have flood insurance. Our home is about 750 MSL and the top of Mansfield Dam is 715 MSL. If we ever flood, Austin would be washed into the Gulf of Mexico. Hmmmmmmmm, not a bad idea for Texas.....
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