Termites, Storm Damage & Fraud

Oct 30, 2020 | Allen A. Ritchie

Formosan Termites Ctsy: pestworld.org


The storm damage we have seen in and around Mobile can expose a major home problem – rotting wood that has been literally hollowed out by termites.

The problem is so severe that reportedly some pest control companies have been rushing out to treat homes in the hopes of being able to blame other reasons for the damage.

Here is how the scam works. The pest company has not treated the home properly, usually by using inferior chemicals or by not fully treating the house. When the damage could be discovered (like after a storm), the company comes out and treats the property. If the damage is later attributed to termites, the pest company then uses an “out” in their contract stating it is only responsible if living bugs are discovered.

But the law is on your side. The reason — fraud invalidates a contract. With some quick legal work, chances are good that you can get the money to fix your house.

For many of my clients, we can prove the company meant to deceive the homeowner. Here are some examples — companies have faked termite protection coverage, technicians allowed prevention barriers to wear off, policy writers charged ultra-high premiums when termite damage was suspected so clients would cancel the coverage, and termite protection salespeople strong-armed customers into inferior coverage programs.

At a trial here in Mobile, one pest control company official testified that built into his company’s business model were several different ways to deny claims. One lawyer responded it was obvious they were “scams to cheat the customers.”

If you have termite protection and find termite damage after this storm, you need the help of an experienced lawyer. My work on these cases shows that the bug treatment companies will not easily pay up … even when the problem is their fault.

If you suffer termite damage or a personal injury like an auto accident, slip and fall or on-the-job injury, you can talk to us at the Law Firm of Eiland and Ritchie for free. We want to help you get back on your feet. We are working remotely mostly but are always available.

Also, join us on NBC 15 LawCall here in Mobile every Sunday night at 10:30 right after the news. We are taking a fall break and will offer 5-minute segments for the rest of the year and a live call-in segment every Monday on NBC 15 at around lunchtime.

Allen Ritchie

Alabama Personal Injury Lawyer