When the policyholder and the insurance company do not agree with the loss amount, the policyholder may submit a written claim for assessment in accordance with the terms of their insurance.
Once the evaluation has been invoked, two impartial assessors are selected on behalf of the policyholder and on behalf of the insurer. The courts of Arizona have limited the role of assessors in determining serious valuation issues:
The estimator's task is to determine the amount of damage caused to various articles submitted for their consideration. It is certainly not their job to resolve issues of coverage and interpret the provisions of the policy. 1
The assessors mutually select a judge to submit any disagreements regarding the amount of the loss. 2 each party will pay its chosen appraiser and share the judge's expenses equally. Arizona policyholders should be aware that assessment is generally considered "separate" if it is not requested within one year of the loss date. 3 However, in the light of general political considerations, the Arizona courts generally favor exceptions, that is, a party seeking to establish an exception bears the burden of proof. 4
1 Hanson v Commercial Union Ins. Co. 723 P.2d 101, 150 Ariz. 283 (Ariz. App. 1986) (citing Hughes v. Potomac Ins. Co of DC ., 199 Cal. App. 2d 239, 253 (Ct. App. 1962)).
2 If a judge cannot be agreed, a court with jurisdiction will make the judge's choice.
3 Meinke against Twin City Fire Ins. Co. 181 Ariz. 576, 582 (Ct. App. 1994).
4 Meinke 181 Ariz. 581.