Couple Claims Insurer ‘Bait and Switch’ on Trailer

Paula and Frederick Bakley of Matgorda County in Texas were at Wharton RV dealership when Progressive Insurance called them saying that the family would not be receiving a $5,000 check to replace their hurricane-totaled RV.

This story by Meagan Flynn originally appeared in the Houston Press.

The claims adjuster had proposed a solution to the family earlier: They could turn over the RV and the title to Progressive, which, in return, would cut the couple a check for $5,169 in accrued equity and pay off the remainder of the loan the Bakleys owed. They planned to use the money to put a down payment on the new trailer, so that they’d have a new home ready to go by the time Progressive came and took their damaged home away on Oct. 19 – but that plan would change before they even left the dealership lot.

Progressive’s “bait and switch,” as the Bakleys’ attorney put it, leaves the couple stuck paying off at least $5,000 more in loans on the now-totaled RV and, if they can’t manage to purchase another trailer by Oct. 19, homeless. Paula Bakley said Progressive is cutting a check for less than half of what it originally paid, after taking the money out of their bank account on Oct. 5.

A Progressive spokesperson said it is trying to resolve the claim with the Bakleys’ attorney, who successfully petitioned a temporary restraining order, preventing Progressive from taking away the trailer on Oct. 19.

A hearing for a preliminary injunction is set for Oct. 24.

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