Hello, I'm a total loss evacuee from the Camp Fire in Paradise, CA. Via my research online, it's suggested not to deposit checks that say. "Final and Complete Settlement" — especially if it's not the correct or fair amount. I also read that this kind of settlement check is illegal in California. But I have a direct deposit set up with the insurance company, therefore I don't have the opportunity to reject a physical check. How do you advise handling this situation so I'm protected? Should I switch over to physical checks and have them mailed to my temporary PMB box? Or is there an action or protocol I can take with the direct deposit setup? Thank you.

About The Expert

Amy Bach

Amy Bach has been a professional advocate for insurance policyholders since 1984 and an attorney since 1989. She co-founded United Policyholders in 1991 and serves as the organization's Executive Director and primary spokesperson; shaping and overseeing the Roadmap to Recovery™, Roadmap to Preparedness, and Advocacy and Action programs. She is a nationally recognized expert on insurance claim and legal matters; frequently interviewed in print and broadcast media, and the author of numerous publications including "The Disaster Recovery Handbook", "WISE UP: The Savvy Consumer's Guide to Buying Insurance" and consumer tips and guides in the UP Claim Help Library.  Recognized by Money Magazine as a Money Hero, Bach is in her eighth consecutive term as an official consumer representative to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, and is a member of the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance.