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We are Insurance Claims Consultants, Cost Estimators and Appraisers.

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Bell Operations Systems are Insurance Claims Consultants.

Our staff consists of Licensed Adjusters, Insurance Brokers, Property Valuation and Insurance Appraisal Experts.
 If you have a question… Contact us.We will ensure that you’re treated fairly.

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The Prepared Mind: Blog & Resources

The Prepared Mind

By Paul Bellenchia 20 Mar, 2017
When a homeowner suffers a loss from a tragedy such as a fire, winter storm, flood, or tornado, the loss can feel crippling. The insurance company will send out an adjuster to investigate the damage. Many times, homeowners grow worried that their lack of knowledge or that of the insurance company adjuster can result in a lower settlement. Policyholders such as home or business owners have the option to hire a public adjuster. Before you put your trust in a public adjuster, there are some important questions to ask.

Is the public adjuster licensed?

Make sure the license applies to the state you are living in. Some adjusters may work for a licensed firm instead of being licensed individually.

Who will physically be working on the case?

Some companies have a sales force who solicit for clients. Yet, this doesn’t mean they are experienced adjusters. It’s important to know the experience level of, and exactly, who will be on your case. Your adjuster should have experience in your type of claim and associated damage.

Have they clarified the compensation?

If a homeowner has already received some money from the insurance company, they can still hire a public adjuster or demand appraisal if they feel the compensation is inadequate or unfair. As the policyholder, make sure to be clear that fees assessed can only come from newly obtained monies from the insurance company. Since the Public Adjuster contract wording is regulated by the State the contract should clearly show the fees as a percentage, tell you of any mandated fee caps, and should mention that you have 3 days to cancel - instructions on how to do so are included.

Remember, Public Adjuster fees are negotiable and should reflect the level of valuable service they will provide.

Appraisal contracts are different and fees should reflect an hourly rate. Appraisers may NOT take a commission or percentage of a claim settlement. Often, Appraisers (Bell Operations included) cap their appraisal fees as not to overburden the claim with unrecoverable expenses.

Do you feel comfortable around the adjuster?

Beware a Public Adjuster that is soliciting 24/7. While the legality of the practice can be questionable, public adjusters should only be contacting you within time frames set by your state insurance departments. Sometimes it can seem that public adjusters are showing up along with the fire department, it can sure feel that way! So, stay calm and trust your gut! Choose someone who can communicate clearly and in a way that you can understand, as you and your adjuster will be in frequent contact.

The Professionals at Bell Operations Systems and its associated firms can fight for the compensation that you as a policyholder deserve. Our adjusters are fully licensed and ready to work with you for you! To learn more visit or to speak to an adjuster, appraiser, or insurance claims consultant, give us a call at (845) 704-7727 today.

Ring The Bell!
By Paul Bellenchia 28 Feb, 2017

Insurance revolves around a system of calculated risk taken by insurance companies. Policyholders purchase an insurance contract that guarantees they are returned to their prior financial position in the event they suffer a covered loss. If your home or business  is damaged by a fire, tropical storm, earthquake, or hail you should be able to rely on your insurance company to, in essence, eliminate the financial blow as per that contract. Sometimes things don't work out as smoothly as advertised by the insurance companies.

When you submit a claim, the insurance company will send out an adjuster to assess the damage and calculate what the repairs will cost.

This claims adjuster is sent by the insurance company and works for the insurance company. Most policyholders don’t realize that the dollar amounts provided by the insurance company’s adjusters or their representatives are open to negotiation and repair costs can be disputed. You can (and should) dispute the claim if it the amounts fall short of reality or you feel you are being treated unfairly. This is where a hiring a Public Adjuster can be beneficial.

A Public Adjuster works for you , as the policyholder.

Most insurance policies also contain a clause that allows you to formally dispute a claim amount. This third-party opinion on the damage  can be set in what is called an appraisal. The appraisal is conducted by an independent disinterested panel. This is indicated in your policy’s appraisal clause .

This is a faster and lower cost option than litigation and is often used successfully by the policyholder to obtain a fair settlement. Once a disagreement occurs between a policyholder and the insurance company, the appraisal clause can be invoked by either party.

You as the policyholder would appoint a claims professional such as a Public Adjuster or Insurance Broker as your “appraiser” - the insurance company will appoint their own appraiser. The policyholder appraiser and an insurance company  appraiser will select an umpire. One may be appointed by the court if the two cannot agree on a candidate. Both appraisers will inspect the property and review the  claim line by line. Any disputes between the appraisers in their damage valuations are sent to the umpire who then reviews the materials and breaks ties. This panel of three helps ensure that an accurate dollar amount is awarded. Any two of the three agreeing  will bind the appraisal award with their signature. The disputing parties pay their appraisers and the split the fee of the  umpire accordingly.  

The award is binding on both parties. Find a more detailed description of this process here .

Do you need the assistance of a Public Adjuster or Appraiser? With over 25 years of experience, Bell Operations Systems can help! We will make sure you receive the correct  compensation in a timely manner ! Find out more by visiting our other pages . To speak to an adjuster, appraiser, or insurance claims consultant, give us a call at (845) 704-7727 today. Ring the Bell!

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