I grew up in a United States Coast Guard family. One of the fondest two years of my life was when my father was stationed on the USCG Dependable and we lived in Panama City, Florida. I sailed in every nook and lagoon of St. Andrews Bay and raced sailboats like my life’s existence depended upon me winning races.

The picture above was from the 1976 Hill Regatta sailed out of the St. Andrews Bay Yacht Club in Panama City, Florida. After law school and after I had saved some money, I joined St. Andrews Bay Yacht Club in 1987 and have stayed a member ever since.

During our Merlin Law Group Town Hall and informational meeting this weekend, I took some time off and visited the torn-up yacht club on Bunkers Cove Road. The events coordinator was pulling out some old scrapbooks when I happened along. I am not certain if she first believed that the skinny young kid in the photo above was me 43 years ago.

Photographs can be priceless. When damaged in a hurricane, policyholders are sometimes told that the insurance policy does not cover “sentimental value” of family photographs. While this is true, the policy typically covers the cost of “reasonable” repairs up to value of replacement cost. Since the replacement cost of many photographs could be impossible to determine, the only measure is a “reasonable” repair cost. Fortunately, there are many companies that specialize in the restoration of damaged personal property items including older photographs. Policyholders should seek out these services.

The one caveat for hurricane damaged photographs is if flood is the sole cause of the damage to the photographs. There is a $2500 limitation under the National Flood Insurance Program dwelling form for such damage to photographs.

If you have suffered damage caused by Hurricane Michael, please do not hesitate to seek experienced professional help with questions about coverage. Merlin Law Group has opened an office in Panama City, Florida, and we are ready to help.

Thought For The Day

Photography is an austere and blazing poetry of the real.
—Ansel Adams

A Photograph Song For The Day

  • Dwayne Hall

    I have a local camera shop and photography studio. The owner has taken water damaged photos, and by taking well lit and high res photos of the damaged item is able to recreate these precious memories. Great Tip.