Insurance adjusters battle low pay, long hours, declining authority, trade groups say..

Adjusters are often the first representative of the insurance company on the scene to assess a home destroyed by fire or storm damage, or a vehicle totaled in an accident.

Traditionally, insurance adjusters filled a key and respected role arbitrating fairness between often-distraught victims and their insurer.

Those days seem to be in the past, industry leaders say. Compensation, working conditions, dwindling responsibility and increased regulations are all thorny issues for insurance adjusters.

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