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Homeowners insurance 30 years paid yet no coverage

Posted by Rebecca Zulauf 
While I was going through this horrific ordeal, they were sitting in their ivory towers, in their $1500 suits laughing at those idiots who trust them to do the right thing. Farmers’ is there for one reason, to make money and they’re not worried about the poor saps that are their policy holders. When the fire hit I was forced to borrow money from friends and to sell personal belongings to fix my damaged home. I was forced to move into a rental house and pay both rent and mortgage. As a hospice nurse I was unable to work due to the stress. How can I offer empathy and caring when I had nothing to give. I fell behind on my mortgage and my home was in foreclosure. I had to beg friends and family for help. I could not pay the rent and could not ask friends to continue to put me up without reimbursement and was forced to stay in my car and then into my home which was full of soot and damage. I had no hot water for 9 months and no electricity for more than a year. I was forced to purchase solar panels from Harbor Freight and a garage sale to power a small mini fridge and some lighting as the temporary power pole which cost me about $5,000 was only to be used for construction purposes--if I used it I could go to jail. I was forced to stay in my home, hiding like a criminal with my pets because the City said my home needed electricity and repairs before I could live in it. Breathing in all of the smoke, scrubbing my floors and walls til my knuckles were bleeding and my back would go out for days I struggled. This was my home for 30 years, where else could I go?
They denied my claim stating I did not cooperate yet I have done everything they should have done. Where is their cooperation??
I called Farmers’ they did nothing… Never paid a dime…


I reported the fire

I attended the appointment at their convenience, made myself available to all questions

I cleaned up the mess they should have.

I rebuilt the garage to the best of my ability which was their responsibility

I provided personal information, bank statements, friends and family information, roommate phone numbers and names, phone records, tax returns, I offered on numerous occasions that I would provide whatever information they would request if I had any ability to find that information.

I cooperated with 5 different sworn and recorded testimonies.

I spent days reading the transcripts and responding to them.

I bought a camera so I could send photos of burnt items.

I paid out of pocket to remove burnt items and for the clean up and the board up.

I am a hospice nurse yet I had to prepare documents I had no idea how to complete them. How to estimate the loss. I asked for Farmers help and no help was available. I did my best yet it was considered not good enough.

I spent days recording the loss and trying to comply with their requests.

I have corresponded by email and phone conversations dozens of times.

I have stored many burnt items for 2 years.

How I have cooperated with Farmers—The questions should be…??WHEN HAVE THEY COOPERATED WITH ME.

I paid my premiums for 30 years on time…
Then the outlet above the work bench arced causing a fire:

I called Farmers’ they did nothing… Never paid a dime…
I paid to have the damage mitigated, repair the holes in the roof which occurred when the fire department tried to save the house.

I endured countless humiliations because my house caught on fire.

My neighbors despise me because 2 years later and my house is still a disaster zone, property values are less and because Farmer’s investigators have made them believe that I am an arsonist.

Was it when I was forced to get rid of my beloved pets because I barely had a place for me to stay? Was it when you denied to help me with a hotel or a clean bed?
Was it when you took my payments for insurance for 30 years and then when I actually needed you—you humiliated me and left me to scrounge for myself.
Was it when you contacted friends to tell them that I was trying to rip off Farmers and probably started the fire myself?
Was it when you contacted my neighbors to discuss possibility that I started the fire myself?
Was it when I was forced to get rid of my beloved pets because I barely had a place for me to stay? Was it when you denied to help me with a hotel or a clean bed?
Was it when you took my payments for insurance for 30 years and then when I actually needed you—you humiliated me and left me to scrounge for myself.
Was it when you contacted friends to tell them that I was trying to rip off Farmers and probably started the fire myself?
Was it when you contacted my neighbors to discuss possibility that I started the fire myself?


look at Farmers sucks dot com They have destroyed my life. I paid them for 30 years faithfully. When my house caught on fire they left me without a place to stay, no one to help with the clean up or board up. Two years later my house is still a mess. I had to do the repairs myself. They cancelled me in the middle of this and no other insurance would carry me until I did the repairs myself. FIRE FARMERS. THEY SUCK. I had to get rid of my pets. They even told me since I was living in my car that they owed me no money because I was not OUT OF POCKET ANYTHING. Unless of course I had to pay for parking somewhere. FIRE THEM!!! Make sure if your elderly parents have FARMERS that they get rid of them.
Please look at the following case wherein a Judge ordered Farmers to pay plaintiffs 15 million dollars for acting in bad faith.
WOODWARD, Okla. – A Woodward County judge awarded three plaintiffs, whose homes were damaged during a recent tornado, a massive settlement against Farmers and Foremost Insurance companies.
After their homes were damaged in the Woodward tornado two years ago, the residents filed the lawsuit, claiming Farmers acted in bad faith.
They say the company did not give them the money they were entitled to under their policies.
Linda Louthan said, “Blatant disregard for their policy holders. They’re not there to carry you through.”
Jeff Marr, the plaintiff’s attorney, said, “Greed and corporate arrogance and indifference and that’s what this was.”
Sterling Parks said, “They’re there for one reason is to make money and they’re not worried about their policy holders.”
Parks had Farmers Insurance when the storm hit but was forced to take out a second mortgage to fix his tornado damaged home.
Louthan had to move into a rent house and has been paying both rent and mortgage.
And Mary Sharpe couldn’t afford to move.
They’ve stayed in their damaged home and patched it as they could.
Sharpe said, “Our home was cracking, it still is cracking. Our electricity is going out. I smell burning wires at times.”
In all, the three plaintiffs were awarded $15 million last week.
The judge consolidated the three cases and awarded them a default judgement against Farmers.
He then awarded each plaintiff $2 million in actual damages and $3 million in punitive damages.
Linda Louthan said, “We were stunned, but we were excited.”
Mary Sharpe said, “We were just like what does that mean? Is he joking?”
Sterling Parks said, “I didn’t know what to think.”
Jeff Marr, the plaintiffs’ attorney, said, “These people are going to have brand new homes and they’re multimillionaires now, or will be, because of the way they were treated.”
According to the court transcript, the judge found Farmers guilty of “oppression, fraud, actual and presumed malice, and that they acted with complete indifference to its duty to treat the plaintiffs fairly.”
Louthan said, “We’re satisfied with the verdict, but is it good enough punishment for them? No.”
All of these tornado victims say if and when they get their millions, it won’t change who they are.

In yet another case . . . . . .
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North Dakota Supreme Court Opinions

Wilson v. Farmers Insurance Group, 2003 ND 8, 655 N.W.2d 414
[Go to Documents]
Filed Jan. 17, 2003 [Download as WordPerfect]

2003 ND 8
Daniel Wilson, Plaintiff and Appellant
Farmers Insurance Group, Defendant and Appellee
No. 20020209
Appeal from the District Court of Ward County, Northwest Judicial District, the Honorable Gary A. Holum, Judge.
Opinion of the Court by Neumann, Justice.
Michael Ward of Eaton, Van de Streek & Ward, Heritage Place, 201 Main Street South, Ste. 200, Minot, N.D. 58701-3947, for plaintiff and appellant.
Jason R. Vendsel of McGee, Hankla, Backes & Dobrovolny, P.O. Box 998, Minot, N.D. 58702-0998, for defendant and appellee.
Wilson v. Farmers Insurance Group
No. 20020209
Neumann, Justice.
[¶1] Daniel Wilson appeals from the trial court's June 4, 2002, summary judgment in favor of Farmers Insurance Group. We reverse and remand.
[¶2] In October of 2000, Daniel Wilson fully insured his 1972 Ford Ranchero with Farmers Insurance Group. On or about November 8, 2000, he filed a claim with Farmers Insurance to recover for an alleged theft of parts from the vehicle. Farmers Insurance denied the claim because Wilson refused to produce certain records Farmers Insurance had requested. On September 10, 2001, Wilson filed an action in small claims court against Farmers Insurance. Farmers Insurance removed the action to district court, denied all allegations, and affirmatively asserted Wilson had not cooperated in its investigation. On February 15, 2002, Farmers Insurance moved for summary judgment, arguing Wilson did not cooperate in its investigation, violating the cooperation clause of the policy and thereby precluding coverage of his claims. The trial court granted the motion for summary judgment, ruling Wilson did not fully comply with the policy provision requiring his cooperation. Wilson appeals.
[¶3] A grant of summary judgment is appropriate when no genuine issue of material fact exists. Tuhy v. Schlabsz, 1998 ND 31, ¶ 4, 574 N.W.2d 823. The party moving for summary judgment has the burden of showing no material facts are disputed. Id. We review the evidence in a light most favorable to the non-movant and then determine if summary judgment was properly granted as a matter of law. Id. at ¶ 5.
[¶4] Wilson's policy states he must "cooperate" with Farmers Insurance and assist in any matter concerning a claim or suit. The policy also requires him to authorize Farmers Insurance to obtain medical and other records, and to submit to an examination under oath. Generally, a breach of a cooperation clause by an insured will operate to relieve the insurer of liability under a policy. 8 Appleman, Insurance Law and Practice § 4772, at 215 (1981). A cooperation clause in an insurance policy is generally regarded as a condition precedent, so that no rights accrue under a policy until the condition is satisfied. Id. § 4771, at 214-15. To result in the breach of a policy condition, an insured's lack of cooperation "must be substantial and material." Id. § 4773, at 222. The standard for compliance with a cooperation provision of a policy is "substantial compliance." See Patel v. Allstate Ins. Co., 570 N.E.2d 357, 361 (Ill. App. 1 Dist. 1991).
[¶5] Wilson argues summary judgment was inappropriate because a genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether he substantially complied with the cooperation clause of the policy he purchased from Farmers Insurance. We have not previously written regarding compliance with cooperation provisions. However, other jurisdictions have addressed that issue. "Generally, the question of whether the insured has violated his insurance policy by failing to cooperate with the insurer is a question of fact for the trial court." Hansen v. Barmore, 779 P.2d 1360, 1364 (Colo. App. 1989); see also Patel 570 N.E.2d at 360 (stating "[w]hether an insured has substantially complied with the provisions of an insurance policy is a question of fact precluding summary judgment"winking smiley. "Only when the evidence is such that reasoning minds could draw but one conclusion does the fact question become a question of law for which summary judgment may be appropriate." Schmidt v. First Nat'l Bank and Trust Co., 453 N.W.2d 602, 605 (N.D. 1990).
[¶6] In the present case, a question of fact exists as to whether Wilson substantially cooperated with Farmers Insurance. While it appears from the record Wilson did not happily jump through the hoops of the investigation, a review of the evidence, in a light most favorable to Wilson, shows he attempted to cooperate, to an extent. He sat for a recorded statement with a Farmers Insurance special claims representative, but the representative's tape recorder malfunctioned. Although he walked out of an initial session because of its long length and his frustration with the examiner, Wilson did complete an examination under oath as required. During its investigation, Farmers Insurance repeatedly requested tax returns, Social Security records, and other financial records. The record shows Wilson provided an explanation regarding the tax returns, provided the Social Security records, and provided some financial records. While Wilson may not have been fully cooperative with Farmers Insurance and Farmers Insurance may not have been satisfied with the contents of Wilson's records, we cannot say, as a matter of law, that he has not substantially complied with the cooperation clause.
[¶7] We conclude the facts in this case could not lead reasoning minds to but one possible conclusion. Summary judgment, therefore, was improper. Accordingly, we reverse the trial court's summary judgment and remand for further proceedings.
[¶8] William A. Neumann
Mary Muehlen Maring
Carol Ronning Kapsner
Dale V. Sandstrom
Gerald W. VandeWalle, C.J.

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