I hired this contractor for the second time in 2 years. Illinois has had some significant hail/wind storms and our house fell victim. We needed a roof replaced as well as one side of the house (vinyl siding). State Farm was paying him handsomely for the job. When I noticed workers only replacing certain slats instead of the whole side (as SF paid to have done), I started looking much closer at the SF claim estimate. When I confronted him, he got very defensive. Basically he got over $5000 to replace 20 slats. Our agreement (I did not know before but with research I now know is unethical) was that if I gave out his card and recommended him, he wouldn’t charge me the deductible. So, 2 big questions: Is there a maximum amount allowed to charge for materials? And is the contractor allowed to decide to charge me a deductible when previously he waived it (both in 2017 and now)? The info on here is excellent, and thank you for your help.
The deductible waiving sounds like insurance fraud, and he was willing to do it because he didn't do the full scope of work. It may cost you your deductible for both times and potentially other penalties and fees but he should not be doing that.
Unless your insurance company cuts you a check, you are responsible for meeting the deductible portion of any job. If State Farm determines with contractor X that they will be paid $5000 for a job, and your deductible is $1000, they are going to pay the contractor $4k and you are going to pay them $1k. The alternative is when your insurance company cuts you a check for the damage, less your deductible, and then you go find someone to fix the damage (or not), and whatever price you negotiate is the price.
In the case you are describing that is definitely insurance fraud, as the insurance company is paying for certain work to be done and it is not being done. You are participating, and did participate in the past, by essentially signing off on not having to pay your portion of the damage by "giving out the contractor's card" and letting the contractor get more from the insurance company than otherwise he would be entitled to. Not only can you be dropped from insurance, knowingly going along with it can get you prosecuted.
1. Waiver of deductible is frequently done and is in fact insurance fraud on your part, not his.
2. What does your contract with the roofer say? If you don't have a signed contract then you are pretty much done except for recalling all the cards you gave out.
Anything more than this get the advise of an attorney who specializes in contract law and consumer fraud.
Let me clarify a little. All of the money was sent to me, and not the contractor. I foolishly signed over the first check, which was almost 3/4 of the job total. I decided to hold the remaining money (again, insurance check, not cashed) because I realized he wasn’t doing the job that was in the Scope of Work. Could someone explain why I’m the one who’s committing insurance fraud when he was the one who told me (twice — once in a text, once verbal) to “not worry about the deductible” because “we got you covered”? I do realize that ignorance of the law isn’t an an excuse, but I never asked for a thing. It’s money that would be owed to him, so why can’t he choose to forgive it?
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