Complaint filed against Auto Damage Appraisers Licensing Board members
Yesterday, in what may be the first of its kind, a complaint was filed against the Auto Damage Appraisers Licensing Board (ADALB)
The complaint is lengthy, but here are a few key points.
The complaint is against ADALB board members Krupa, Coyne and Garcia. The complaint claims these board members:
"willfully allow auto damage appraisals to be conducted in violation of the regulations with total disregard to their sworn oath of office to uphold the laws of the Commonwealth."
"The vast majority of the thousands of auto damage appraisals performed here in Massachusetts under the authority granted by Mr. Kurpa, Mr. Coyne and Mr. Garcia are not signed and are not sworn to under the penalties of perjury as demanded by law, and are therefore in violation. All appraisals are illegal and fraudulent without these mandatory requirements."
"While the words "sworn to under the penalties" may appear on many appraisals, without the appraisers signature has no legal bearing, and is further evasive mockery of no legal relevant value or purpose except to further deceive consumers with an already fraudulent document."
The board members duties include:
1. granting of state mandated licenses to individuals to be licensed auto damage appraisers
2. to assure that persons so licensed adhere to the provisions of law and regulations,
3. to investigate complaints from consumers
4. and to assure compliance from auto insurance companies and auto body shops
Board members Krupa, Coyne and Garcia "routinely, in an open on going, and inexplicable manner and conduct fail and refuse to enforce the laws of our Commonwealth, their sworn obligation"
The complaint is centered on MA General Law 26 Section 8G which states in part:
There shall be in the division of insurance an auto damage appraiser licensing board, hereinafter called the board...The board shall....adopt rules and regulations governing licenses under this section in order to promote the public welfare and safety.
Furthermore, that law describes exactly what a legal, compliant appraisal is by stating that all appraisals:
"shall be sworn to under the penalties of perjury and shall also include the appraiser's signature, license number, seal, fee charged and date the motor vehicle was examined.
And therein is the bases for the complaint.
Appraisers fail to sign their appraisals. Appraisals lacking a signature are non-compliant and therefore illegal. The board members refuse to enforce the law and by doing so are not promoting public welfare and safety.
Chairman Cox had asked the person filing the complaint, Thomas Colo, if he wanted it placed on the next meeting agenda. Colo responded that he had no problem with that, and briefly described the complaint as being against three members of the board, Mr. Coyne, Mr. Krupa (both insurance appointees) and Mr. Garcia (an auto body appointee).
This touched off a tirade by Mr. Coyne.
Coyne: "Mr. Chairman, once again we are letting this man speak when he has no right to speak!...
It [the complaint] is not even filled out properly! It is not on the agenda! It was faxed to us and was not even sent to the Division of Insurance! If it doesn't go through proper channels why are we letting him speak?
Tom Colo responded: "The Division of Insurance has nothing to do with this, this is a regulatory board that is Independent."
Coyne shouted "Once again Mr. Chairman, he's rattling again!"
Colo: "You're the guy who's rattling."
Chairman Cox defused the heated confrontation by stating the complaint would be placed on the the agenda for the next board meeting on March 9, 2010.
Colo thanked the chairman and said he has not problem with that.
What will become of this? Your guess is as good as mine. The ADALB is still without a full board since Valarioti was fired 6 months ago. The governors embarrassing attempt to illegally stack the ADALB with Progressive Insurance employee Karen Mills didn't last long. The Attorney General's Office won't get involved. Complaints continue to pile up on the Boards desks, some years old. Massachusetts consumers continue to get the short end of all this. It's like the wild, wild, west here.