Fliers Promise Money for Fire Damage
Photo: Video by kmir6.com
CREATED Aug. 2, 2013
The Mountain Fire is out, and while homes were lost up in the mountains -- the worst effects here in the Coachella Valley were ash and smoke.
Now at least one legal group is reaching out to valley residents, telling them they can be reimbursed for the costs to clean up the ash and soot.
This is one of the fliers that many people, especially in Palm Springs, recently found in their mailboxes after the Mountain Fire.
Some people told me they think it's taking advantage of a bad situation.
In big, bold letters, the flier says if you saw ash or debris at your home you could be entitled to financial compensation.
Harold Watts in Palm Springs threw his away.
"Someone is trying to capitalize on a tragedy that happened here, and I just see it as the wrong thing to do," said Harold.
We called Daglian Law Group to ask who they're suing.
"At this point, we're not suing anybody in particular, this is simply a homeowner's claim," said Gary Daglian with Daglian Law Group.
Instead, Daglian says they are letting people know clean-up costs are covered.
"Their homeowner's insurance policy actually covers them for a loss such as this," said Daglian.
The Mountain Fire rained down ash and soot across the valley, especially in Palm Springs.
"The pool was covered as well as the driveway here, and I hadn't seen anything like that at all," said Harold.
Harold had his pool and yard cleaned, but doesn't expect money back.
"It was more an inconvenience than a real hardship or nuisance," said Harold.
Daglian says they've had a mixed response to the fliers: some thanking the law group for the information, and others calling them opportunists.
He says that's not what this is about.
"It's the consumer advocates that through the years of battling insurance companies and big corporations have insured that seat belts and air bags are installed in vehicles we're the ones protecting the average consumer," said Daglian.
Many people in a Palm Springs neighborhood told us that they did get one of the fliers in the mail. In fact, one resident told us that he got notices from three different attorneys.
"Thought it was absolutely ridiculous, it just reminded me that lawyers are just trying to make a buck, it was nobody's fault, it was an accident, and who are you going to sue?" said Harold.
Though the Mountain Fire is now contained, the impacts are still smoldering down here in the valley.
The attorney told me a couple dozen homeowners have hired him to help them with claims.