Originally published by Jason Cieri.
Chubb Corporation has a good reputation in the insurance industry for fairly handling claims and paying insureds what they are owed. Chubb fell victim to an overzealous adjuster, Dennis Sorge, who was colluding with a contractor he hired to estimate repair costs. The contractor, Paul H. Mertz Jr., would inflate the estimates and then Sorge steered the repair work back to the Mertz. After a 40-day trial, Judge Nelson S. Roman entered a judgment of nearly $12.3 million against Mertz and Sorge. The judgment was suspended only as to Sorge due to bankruptcy issues. Mertz was also ordered to pay Chubb’s costs and attorney fees.
Sorge, who had been with Chubb for nearly 30 years, would hire Mertz to provide repair estimates. Under Chubb’s policy, a contractor could not consult for Chubb and also work at the same time as a contractor on the insured property. Consultants may not seek or even discuss the possibility of a contract until their work for Chubb is done. Even after the…
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