November 17, 2016

One of the most common complaints that I have from people that come to me when they’ve had a fire claim denied on a home or a business is the fact that they feel like their character was becoming an issue.

Even more important than the actual fire itself at their home. Insurance companies love to go through your life with a fine-tooth comb to look for anything that, in their opinion, would support the contention that you deliberately set fire to your own property.

Florida Rules of Evidence & Federal Rules of Evidence

The reality is, under the Florida Rules of Evidence as well as the Federal Rules of Evidence, character evidence cannot be used for what is referred to commonly as “Action Inconformity”. Meaning, that because you have a particular character trait, that makes it more likely that you’re an arsonist.

If you’re involved in any kind of fire claim and the insurance company is asking for personal information, there are boundaries to what they can ask for, and boundaries for what can be used in evaluating your claim.

Some insurance companies get extremely aggressive about this. Even asking for copies of tax returns, high school credentials regarding how well you did in classes, or even ask to interview ex-spouses or girlfriends or boyfriends. These are not appropriate questions.

If you have questions about the manner in which an insurance company is investigating your claim, go to our website or give us a call.