A claims veteran with 30 years of experience and current assistant vice president, property claims manager, for Seneca Insurance, Patterson offers advice on finding the truth.
Finding His Way
Patterson’s claims career began in 1989 with Liberty Mutual, where he handled first- and third-party auto claims and workers compensation claims. After a few jumps, he landed at Chubb and began handling residential and commercial property claims, a position he relished because of the face-to-face meetings with insureds. In 2008, he moved to Seneca, climbing the ladder from field adjuster to his current position.
Advice to Would-Be Claims Managers
“Be your own manager first. Manage yourself well. Manage your manager well. Help others. Increase your knowledge in both claims and leadership/management principles.”
Let’s See That Again
Patterson says claims file reviews are usually dreaded by both the manager and the employee because they can be seen as punitive. However, he says the goal should be to find the weak links in the process by answering the following questions: Where in the file is further development needed? Is the adjuster getting adequate direction? Is their coverage analysis accurate? Are the best practices working?
What He Looks for in a Litigation Partner
“Ambiguity. Crisp opinions on coverage matters without hedging makes the greatest impact.”
Patterson, on what irks him about a litigation partner.
Outside the office, Patterson says he loves spending time with his wife of 28 years, Katrina, and their children, Ericka and Shane. When he is not with them, he’s working to help men become better versions of themselves as the coordinator of the International Christian Brotherhood, an organization that trains men to use Christ-likeness as the standard for manhood.
“Tell me the truth, not what you think I want to hear. Are we vulnerable?”