Yesterday I wrote an article about Allstate’s failure to provide documents required by a subpoena from the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation. Some of those important documents are the same claim handling documents that members of the Alaska Personal Injury Law Group are trying to get from Allstate in a class action for bad faith and fraud against Alaska insureds.
The documents we are seeking have to do with special programs Allstate implemented in 1995. There have been assertions in bad faith cases across the country that these programs systematically underpay compensation Allstate owes to its own insureds under their Allstate policies.
As noted in my article yesterday, the Florida Commissioner of Insurance suspended what was supposed to have been a two day hearing after only a half day, so he could consider what sanction to impose on Allstate to make them produce the documents. Since a court in Missouri was already fining Allstate $25,000 a day for refusing to produce documents, he concluded a fine would have no effect on Allstate. So he suspended the authority of three Allstate companies to write new insurance in Florida. The companies were Allstate Insurance Company, Allstate Indemnity Company, and Allstate Property and Casualty Company. He later issued a Final Order that expanded the list to include all ten Allstate companies that had been served with the subpoena.
It will be very interesting to see how this plays out. How far will Allstate go to keep these important documents from the public eye? If they do not show an underpayment scheme, why is Allstate taking such risks to hide them from regulators and the public?