Tag archives: insurance

Insurance Woes
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   March 14, 2019

Many residents in Montecito, Santa Barbara, and in both northern and southern Santa Barbara Counties are receiving non-renewals from their insurance companies, a topic that has been discussed at length in both in-person forums as well as online at NextDoor.com, a neighborhood social media site.  Joanne Gonzales, Vice President of local insurance agency Brown & […]

Rules for Insurers – Because Insurance isn’t So Sure
By Steven A. Blum   |   June 28, 2018

In the wake of the Montecito Mudslide, most property owners first turned to their insurance companies for funds, and most of the insurers have responded well. A few have not, and some others are still trying to figure out how to handle the claims. In some cases, insurance adjusters from other states have landed in […]

Divine Intervention
By Steven A. Blum   |   June 14, 2018

“It was an act of God,” is a phrase I hear from time to time. Not from preachers but from landowners, and sometimes their insurance adjusters, trying to avoid liability for injury caused by a natural condition on their land to neighbors. The question arises: Does a landowner have the duty to remedy a natural […]

Help with Insurance Claims
By Montecito Journal   |   June 7, 2018

Sometimes it takes a village. That point was well demonstrated three weeks ago, when dozens of Montecito residents – mostly strangers to each other – gathered at a community roundtable to share what they’d learned so far from the Thomas Fire and Debris Flow insurance claim experience.  There was some initial trepidation the group might […]

Honoring the Fallen
By Montecito Journal   |   May 31, 2018

A recent incident in Los Angeles caught my attention and has really troubled me. A high school teacher was fired for his reaction and rant to a student wearing a shirt that had the word Marines on it. His diatribe on the status of anyone in the military as being the “lowest of the low” […]

To Re-build or Not?
By Bob Hazard   |   May 24, 2018

Mark your calendars for June 11, 2018. That’s the expected date for the public release of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Flood Recovery Maps for Montecito. The map release will mark a critical milepost in making the rebuilding decisions that will shape the future character of Montecito for the next 50 years.  FEMA Recovery […]

Questions to Ask Your Insurer
By Montecito Journal   |   May 10, 2018

We received a good question from a leader in our community, John Abraham Powell, founder of the Bucket Brigade. We wanted to share Mr. Powell’s concerns with everyone. He and his crew have been asking people if they need assistance removing debris. To his surprise, many have answered that their insurance adjusters have instructed them […]

Dadiana Dancing
By Montecito Journal   |   April 26, 2018

Just imagine “A world of ballroom dance creating a beautiful place in your mind, body and soul. ” Even after the fire, mudslide, earthquake, and multiple evacuations, five women (three from Montecito), and their dance instructor, Vasily Golovin, owner of Dance Fever Studio Montecito, found the time to attend the San Francisco Open Dancesport Competition. […]

What Montecito Needs Now
By Montecito Journal   |   April 12, 2018

Going forward, Montecito home and business owners need to have continuing, affordable, comprehensive, insurance coverage. As a community, we need to speak with one voice in demanding that public officials ensure that such insurance remains in place.  Here are three of the issues that will have to be addressed by lawmakers, insurance regulators, and insurance […]

Insurance Claims Top $421 Million
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   April 5, 2018

Earlier this week, California Insurance commissioner Dave Jones announced that insurers have received 2,000+ insurance claims totaling more than $421 million in losses from the Montecito mudslide.  “Over $421 million in insured losses represents more than property lost – behind these numbers are the tragic deaths of 21 people and thousands of residents traumatized by […]

Smugness on Parade
By Montecito Journal   |   March 15, 2018

The Hollywood crowd must be asking why the Oscar’s ratings continued to decline again this year? Why is it that more people don’t want to watch a bunch of glitzy starlets with boob jobs and drunk on their own self-importance trying to impress each other? Could it be that they can’t help themselves from using […]

Montecito Memories
By Montecito Journal   |   March 8, 2018

Harry Kolb’s wife, Karen, recently passed away (see “In Passing” on page16); he penned the following short but poignant memory of their growing up together during an email back-and-forth with us that we think deserves wider dissemination: Karen’s brother, Jim, and I were best friends growing up in the St. Louis hills and Karen was […]

The Outlook for Property Values in Montecito
By Bob Hazard   |   March 1, 2018

For most residents of Montecito, a large portion of their investment portfolio and net worth is tied up in the value of their home. What will be the long- and short-term impact of the twin tragedies of the Thomas Fire – the largest in California history – and the destructive 1/9 debris flow on real […]

Who Should Pay (Part III)
By Montecito Journal   |   March 1, 2018

I believe you are off on this one (“Who Should Pay?” MJ #24/7). Most of the merchants I spoke with were paying their workers at least part of their wages. You might want to call around. After all these years, you would think a business could protect workers from their losses. I don’t want to […]

Who Says the King Can Do No Wrong? Finding More Ways to Recover Losses
By Steven A. Blum   |   February 22, 2018

When I returned to Glen Oaks after the evacuation, I was still stunned by the physical and emotional devastation as neighbors mourn the loss of friends, relatives, their homes, and nature itself. Even as we begin to pick up the pieces, the weather forecast promised rain which turned out to be sprinkles not a storm. […]

Who Should Pay?
By Montecito Journal   |   February 15, 2018

Two videos on the 93108fund.org website were brought to my attention. Both ladies profiled currently work for Pierre Lafond, and they say in the video that they have missed up to 90 hours [of] work due to the fire/flood and are now receiving checks from the 93108fund.org to make up for lost hours. I’m wondering […]

Troubled Waters: Surface Water Law and the Montecito Floods
By Steven A. Blum   |   February 8, 2018

In last week’s issue of The Montecito Journal, I explained that if the facts show a fire, covered by a typical homeowners’ insurance policy, was the “efficient proximate cause” of a later mudslide, then mudslide damage could be covered under a homeowners’ insurance policy. On January 29, California insurance commissioner Dave Jones adopted the same […]

Business Interruption Insurance – Recovering it All
By Matthew Bourhis   |   February 8, 2018

Jeannine’s is my favorite breakfast spot in Montecito. Grab a coffee, have a seat outside, and do a little people-watching while you wait for pancakes. It makes for a delightful morning. That’s why it’s upsetting to me, and many others, that Jeannine’s may be facing some tough insurance challenges due to the recent debris flow. […]

Insurance Policies Cover the “Efficient Proximate Cause” of Property Damage
By Matthew Bourhis   |   February 1, 2018

A week ago, law professor Kenneth Klein wrote a Los Angeles Times op-ed saying that Montecito residents should not expect their homeowners insurance to cover flood and mudslide damage. He argued that policy exclusions likely preclude recovery. I challenged that assertion in a letter to the editor, arguing that where there are multiple, different causes […]

What’s Your Shoe Size? One Size Won’t Fit All Feet: Class Actions, Insurance, And Topography
By Steven A. Blum   |   February 1, 2018

Chris Wilkinson and his son, Kai, filled their truck with emergency supplies and radio equipment. They are members of the Montecito Emergency Response and Recovery Action Group known as MERRAG. It was January 8. KEYT had warned of heavy rainfall. As a third-generation Montecitoan who has lived in the same Glen Oaks home since 1963, […]