7 juiciest stories about insurance claims

The handbag full of bling
The handbag full of bling © Brian Chase/

Some claims adjusters are just out of their league among the 1 percent.

"A lot of insurance adjusters have contractor skills because of damage to buildings, but when you bring out handmade Italian shoes or a bespoke (handmade) suit, it's a foreign language," says Kirkpatrick. "You can buy a Hermes bag in a certain species of crocodile for $125,000. So, to tell an insurance adjuster whose home may be worth $125,000 that someone might own this purse, they'll look at you like you have three heads."

Kirkpatrick's trained eye helped prevent a costly loss when an eager cleaning crew began clearing a fire-damaged Connecticut home before he'd had a chance to inventory its contents. Among the refuse, he discovered a charred Chanel purse containing a $400,000 diamond and sapphire necklace, undamaged.

"Closely looking at a woman's purse is key to our process. You never assume there isn't something placed away or in there from the last time they traveled," he says. "The owner was aghast that she had not remembered where the necklace was. She actually thought it was in her safe deposit box. It was a great feeling to help find that."


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