Claudia Says...

Q&A Series with Claudia Gaglione

Claudia received her Juris Doctorate from the University of Southern California Law Center in 1982 and specializes in the defense of professional malpractice claims. Since 1987, Claudia has personally supervised over 4,000 claims and lawsuits filed against real estate appraisers across the country. By virtue of this experience, she is uniquely qualified to speak about what kinds of things appraisers get sued for and what defenses are most successful. More importantly, Claudia can discuss the types of errors that are avoidable and how appraisers can make themselves the best possible defendants in the event they are ever sued.

Would you like Claudia to manage your liability concerns?

Duty to cooperate

I was sued last year and my insurance company is defending me. The lawsuit involves 1 appraisal I did in 2007. The borrowers who are suing me say that I conspired with the bank to inflate values and they asked me to give them copies of every appraisal I ever did for this bank. [...]

Steer Clear

In 2015, a local attorney hired me to appraise a 6 unit apartment building. The property was owned by a partnership made up of 3 men, let's call them A, B, and C. My client said [...]

Roads unknown

I just got a call from a lender/client about a new assignment and I am not sure what to do. The client says this is not an appraisal, but [...]

The Fine Print

One of our lender clients has forwarded a new form that they want us to sign and submit with our commercial appraisals. Overall, I don't see anything that causes me too much concern but the one section [...]

FNMA repurchase demand

I did an appraisal 4 years ago for one of my clients. They never questioned me about that report. Today I found out that client sold the loan to FNMA and now they want me to help them. It seems that FNMA has a negative review of my appraisal [...]

Approved list removal

I did an appraisal for a lender in 2013. A few months ago they wrote to me saying they had a negative review of my report. They asked me to look over the review and to send them my comments. The review they sent me was [...]

Code violations and expertise

Last year I did a "subject to completion" appraisal of a new home being built nearby. The appraisal was based on the plans they gave me at the time. There has been some press around here lately about problems with the local building department. [...]

Appraisal Update Obligation?

I appraised a single family residence for a good lender client about a year and a half ago. Today I got a call from another lender wanting an "update". I explained to this guy who called today that I could not do an "update" but, [...]

Client Confidentiality?

A borrower / homeowner called and stated that they got my cell phone number from the lender. I figured that I can now discuss the appraisal with the borrower. Was I correct in assuming that? [...]

A case of forgery

I just got a very disturbing call from a lender. They wanted to ask me a question about how I arrived at the square footage in a report I did about 2 years ago. When he gave me the address of the property, [...]

Changing an appraisal

I just got a call from an angry homeowner.  I did a refi appraisal a few weeks ago and my value was $137,000, based on 1100 square feet.  This lady said she bought the home 2 years ago for $178,000. [...]

Compensation for a subpoena

I was recently served with a subpoena to show up at a trial with my appraisal work file. I called the attorney who sent it and it turns out this lawsuit has nothing to do with me, but this guy insists that I have to be [...]

Unpaid Invoice

A lender client has not paid my bills for a report I did a year ago. They say the value was no good. They were supposed to pay me $10,000 in 4 installments of $2,500. They paid me $5,000 but still owe me the rest. [...]

Lender do not use list

I got a letter the other day from a lender saying because of some bad review of one of my appraisals, I am now on their "DO NOT USE" list. Will the insurance company sue to get me back on the list? [...]

Request for a cost to repair

I recently appraised a bank owned home for this AMC. I was provided with a 40 page home inspection report that listed a variety of problems ranging from structural issues to termites to roof problems to mold. [...]

Responsible party in a lawsuit

I had a lawsuit filed against my company a year ago. Now the attorney hired by the insurance company says it should be settled because there are some problems with the appraisal, which I know he is right. [...]

A subpoena and a destroyed workfile

I was served with a subpoena to testify at a deposition and I am also supposed to bring my appraisal and work file with me. My only problem is that the appraisal in question was done in 2000 and I have already destroyed my file. [...]

What is an actual claim?

I am filling out my renewal application for E&O insurance and have a question. I just remembered that someone called me a few months ago to complain that I had made a mistake on an appraisal I did some years back. I did not [...]

When is it time to call my E&O provider?

I was talking to another appraiser recently at a USPAP class. He said he calls his E&O Company every time someone calls to ask him a question. He said if we don't do this then the insurance company can cancel [...]


About 2 weeks ago I appraised a home in California.  This property was in an area affected by the recent wildfires.  Today, the lender called and said that they wanted me to go out, ASAP, drive by the property [...]

Angry borrower wants money back

I just got off the phone with the borrower on a property I appraised a month or so ago. This guy was looking for a refinance loan and was really upset that my value did not come in higher than what he paid for the property [...]