January 2015 E-Bulletin

This month's E-Bulletin topics include:

  1. New Appeal Process for the Property Forum in 2015
  2. Evidence Considerations: Vehicle Photographs and Descriptions
  3. Training Opportunities
  4. Upcoming E-Subro Hub Enhancement, January 2015
  5. Don't Miss It! NASP Subrogation Litigation: Skills and Management Conference

New Appeal Process for the Property Forum in 2015

Based on the feedback provided by members, AF has revised the appeal process for the Property Forum in 2015.

To meet the membership's desire for having more decisions be eligible for appeal, the Property Forum minimum company claim amount to qualify for an appeal will be reduced from $25,000 to $10,000. This change will take effect for all Property decisions published after January 1, 2015.

Effective for all Property appeals filed on or after January 1, 2015, when a party wishes to file an appeal, it will need to submit the online form on the Post-Decision Inquiry Web page. The other party(ies) will be notified and given an opportunity to respond to the appeal by also utilizing the online submission form. This change to the process provides consistency in the submissions of all parties' appeal positions.

In addition, a standard panel of three for the appeal hearing will no longer be used. Instead, the appeal submissions, along with the original file and decision, will be sent to a single appeal arbitrator for review. The appeal arbitrator will decide whether the original arbitrator(s) erred. If the appeal arbitrator agrees with the original decision, the original decision will stand.

Should the appeal arbitrator agree with the appealing party that an error was made that results in a different decision, the appeal materials will then be sent to a second appeal arbitrator. This second appeal arbitrator will serve as the "tie breaker." After review of the materials, if the second appeal arbitrator agrees with the original decision, the original decision will stand. If the second appeal arbitrator agrees with the new decision by the first appeal arbitrator, then the original decision will be overturned; the new decision will be updated online; and the parties will be notified.

AF is pleased to provide a more streamlined process and more efficient use of member arbitrator resources.

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Evidence Considerations: Vehicle Photographs and Descriptions

Part 4 of the Evidence Considerations Series

Image of a man taking a photo of car damageVehicle photographs and detailed descriptions of the location and nature of the damages could be crucial in proving your liability position. Photographs should include both close-up views as well as views that provide an overall perspective of the damages. It may be difficult to determine what one is viewing if all of the photographs are too close, too distant, or unlabeled.

Even if your insured does not have collision coverage and an inspection of his or her vehicle may not be necessary, you may wish to inspect and photograph the vehicle in order to gather important evidence concerning impact points, location of damages, lack of damages, etc. It is also helpful to have a large measuring device visible in the photographs to illustrate the height of the damages, which may come into play if the adverse party is contending the damages are unrelated to the loss at hand.

We conclude the Evidence Considerations Series next month with "Providing Sufficient Evidence." Don't miss that issue of the E-Bulletin!

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Training Opportunities

Woman using a computerWhether you are filing for the first time or want a refresher course, these interactive, instructor-led Webinars offer valuable information on filing and responding to claims. Sign up today on the AF Web site!

Writing Effective Contentions (Filing Company)
Feb. 4, 11 AM EDT

Develop the skills you need to prepare an effective case by learning how to write an introductory statement, body, and closing statement, and discover how to use the "linking" technique to support each allegation with specific evidence. An activity is included to provide learners with the opportunity to apply the content discussed.

Writing Effective Contentions (Responder Company)
Feb. 5, 2 PM EDT

Develop the skills you need to effectively respond to a filing by learning how to write an introductory statement, body, and closing statement, and discover how to use the "linking" technique to support each allegation made with specific evidence. Also includes discussion on affirmative defenses and disputing damages.

Arbitration Rules and Terms
Feb. 10, 11 AM EDT

Upon completion of this 60-minute Webinar, learners will be able to better explain and apply the key rules and terms of AF's intercompany arbitration programs.

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Upcoming E-Subro Hub Enhancement, January 2015

Screenshot of the new damage type options

AF will be releasing a new enhancement to E-Subro Hub in January 2015 that will introduce an option to specify whether Auto Damages (Company Paid) are "Collision" or "Comp (OTC)." OTC stands for "Other Than Collision." The default selection will be Collision.

The damage type will be added to new (pre-issued) Demands, Counter Offers, Manual Settlement Override, Damages Worksheet, Demand Packages (Print), and the Data Integration specification.

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Don't Miss It! NASP Subrogation Litigation: Skills and Management Conference

NASP Subrogation Litigation: Skills and Management ConferenceThe Meritage Resort — Napa, CA
Mar. 19-20, 2015
Register today!

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