Colorado policyholders should be mindful to review their insurance policies for time limit considerations that may bar them from pursuing insurance benefits beyond two years after the May 8, 2017, hailstorm. While Colorado requires that any action against an insurance company for failure to pay covered benefits must be brought within three years of the date of loss, Colorado allows insurance companies to contractually reduce this time period to as little as six months in commercial and business owner policies of insurance. Failing to bring an action within this prescribed period can ultimately lead to the inability to seek legal recourse where an insurance company is failing to pay covered benefits.
Equally important, most insurance policies provide that notice of loss must be provided as soon as practicable after a policyholder becomes aware of damages to its property. The insurance carriers ability to deny coverage on this technicality has been discussed by both myself (The Importance of Promptly Providing Notice of Loss) and more recently by Timothy Burchard (Colorado Notice Standard Update For Residential and Commercial Property Damage).
While the law in Colorado is currently unsettled as to whether an insurance company is required to demonstrate prejudice by the delayed notice, late notice can lead to a denial of an otherwise valid claim for damages. Colorado policyholders should make a claim once any damages are suspected or known.
If you have been affected by the May 8, 2017, hailstorm and feel that your insurance company is not properly handling your loss, please do not hesitate to contact our Denver office to speak with a Colorado licensed attorney.