TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Things still aren’t back to normal for many Floridians who were hit by Hurricane Ian over six months ago.

Many families are struggling to navigate the confusing claims process and pay for home repairs.

8 On Your Side Investigator Mahsa Saeidi is pushing state regulators for answers about the process.

Last month, we told you about allegations made in a state house hearing.

In December, in the wake of Hurricane Ian, as thousands of Floridians were still waiting on their insurance to come through, three insurance field adjusters went before the Florida House Commerce Committee and testified their damage estimates had been changed.

The adjusters said their estimates were altered to reduce payouts to storm victims.

“They’ve got to stop changing our estimates and leaving our names on them,” said licensed Florida insurance adjuster Mark Vinson.

“There are some serious allegations,” said Mark Friedlander with the Insurance Information Institute. Mark spent 13 years at an insurance company in Jacksonville.

Several weeks later, two state investigations were launched.

8 On Your Side wanted to know when and how a field adjuster’s estimate can legitimately be changed. But turns out, Florida’s new Insurance Commissioner Michael Yaworsky will not answer that question.

Friedlander says that typically, when you report a claim to your insurance company, they assign a field adjuster to inspect and give you an estimate on your loss.

But field adjuster’s don’t have the final say.

Ultimately, it’s the desk adjusters and the insurance companies who make coverage decisions.

So, when and how can the estimates of a field adjuster be changed?

“The allegation is that estimates were changed without the consent of the field adjuster but the field adjuster’s name was still on the document, is it okay to do that?” Investigator Mahsa Saeidi asked.

“That clearly is not a standard operating procedure in the property casualty industry,” said Friedlander. “If it has been significantly altered, for whatever reasons, it would not be appropriate to keep the field adjuster’s name on there, without their consent.”

But not everyone agrees with Friedlander.

Other insurance industry insiders told 8 On Your Side on background they can, and do change field adjuster’s estimates, routinely, without consent.

So, to get a clear answer, we went to Yaworsky, the man in charge of regulating insurance companies. We asked his office repeatedly to answer the question. They declined to answer directly. First, they sent us a link to a toolkit for consumers, directing us to two pages that don’t answer the question.

Next, they sent us a statute to analyze, FS 626.9541 Unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices.

But considering this potentially impacts every single insurance company and millions of Floridians, it’s not a reporter’s job to interpret regulations, answer unsettled questions, and provide guidance to an entire industry.

We’re not the only ones trying to get an answer. State Sen. Travis Hutson, the sponsor of the Insurer Accountability bill, wants to force insurance companies to detail who makes estimate changes and why.

The state has not accused any specific insurance company of wrongdoing in connection to the insurance adjuster’s claims.

If you have a tip for Mahsa, send her an email to MSaeidi@WFLA.com