California Department of Insurance Bans Sender of Misleading Wildfire Mailers
A California Department of Insurance investigation into misleading mailers on insurance claims following wildfires led to a ban of public adjuster and California Recovery Group owner Argen Youssefi of Glendale.
The investigation reportedly found California Recovery Group and its owner, Youssefi, were soliciting business at consumers’ homes and sending mass mailers to file insurance claims related to damage caused by wildfires.
The mailers prompted consumers to visit the website SmokeClaim.com or call a number to receive wildfire smoke settlement information.
Investigators reportedly found CRG and its representatives misled prospective clients by telling them the program was funded by the state. They reportedly also told them that there would be no claim against their homeowner’s insurance and their insurance rates would not be affected. Homeowners were told since the wildfires were declared a catastrophic event, there would be no impact on their existing insurance policy. In fact, homeowner’s insurance typically covers smoke damage.
CSI investigators found CRG submitted insurance claims without the knowledge or consent of the homeowners and listed themselves as a payee on some of the claims. CRG reportedly representatives canvassed neighborhoods for clients and were not licensed by the department.
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