Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is a lawyer. He correctly noted at a Hurricane Ian press conference that there will be insurance claims disputes. He explained that the flood carrier will try to argue the damage was caused by the hurricane winds, and the wind insurer will do the opposite. He then went too far and tried to explain to the press how to distinguish one from the other.
Continue Reading Do I Make A Wind Damage Or Flood Damage Claim? Public Adjusters Are Trained To Adjust Both Claims At The Same Time

The Policy: Plaintiffs, Frymire Home Services, Inc. and Whitfield Capital LLC (collectively “Plaintiffs”), purchased a commercial policy for their office building in Dallas, Texas from Defendant Ohio Security Insurance Company (“OSIC”). The policy explicitly covered “windstorm and hail” losses but excluded “cosmetic” damage to the roof as well as the standard insurer defense for non-payment—“wear and tear.”
Continue Reading “Wear and Tear” or “Wind and Hail” or Both: Fifth Circuit Certifies Questions to Texas Supreme Court Regarding the Doctrine of Concurrent Causation

Joseph J. Henderson & Sons, Inc. (Henderson), was hired to install panels on a roof designed to expand the Iowa City’s wastewater treatment facility. Henderson was also a named insured on the builder’s risk insurance policy issued by Travelers Property and Casualty Company of America. The panels were damaged during a windstorm event and Henderson filed a claim with Travelers. Travelers responded by denying the claim, stating they were not liable due to Henderson’s faulty workmanship. The case went to trial where Henderson won $581,235.65 in damages, and Travelers appealed.1
Continue Reading Appellate Court Rules Contractor’s Faulty Workmanship Did Not Bar Coverage

I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. My favorite policy exclusions carriers cite to deny property damage claims are wear, tear, and deterioration, improper workmanship, and construction defect. Do you know whether your state is a concurrent causation state? This could mean the difference between coverage and no coverage for a loss.
Continue Reading North Carolina – Concurrent Causation

In December of 2016, I wrote about Sebo v. American Home Assurance Company,1 where the Florida Supreme Court reversed the appellate court’s adoption of the “Proximate Efficient Cause” doctrine and found that instead, the lower court should have applied the “Concurrent Causation Doctrine,” as laid out in Wallach v. Rosenberg,2 in a situation where both the excluded cause of faulty construction, combined with the covered causes of rain and wind resulted in a total loss to Sebo’s property.
Continue Reading Court Rejects Jury Instruction Inconsistent with Concurrent Causation Doctrine; Remands for New Trial

Coverage questions under an “all-risk” insurance policy, in their simplest form, are typically determined by whether the peril is expressly limited or excluded. But what happens when multiple perils, both covered and excluded, combine to cause a loss? From this scenario developed the theory of “concurrent causation.”
Continue Reading The Realty of Colorado’s Anti-Concurrent Cause Exclusion Law

On December 1, 2016, the Florida Supreme Court decided Sebo v. American Home Assurance Company, Inc.,1 resolving whether coverage existed under an all-risk policy when there were multiple causes of loss and at least one of the causes was excluded, in favor of the insured.

Continue Reading The Florida Supreme Court Clarifies What Rule to Apply When There Are Multiple Causes of Loss Under an All-Risk Policy

After Superstorm Sandy, Shaun Marker published a series of articles about damages that were caused to properties by boats on land. In the series, So I Have A Boat In My Front Yard Following Super Storm Sandy; Will My Flood Insurer Cover The Removal Of It And Other Non-Owned Debris?, Marker discussed how boats that washed ashore would be covered under standard flood and excess flood policies. But boats weren’t the only thing washing up on land, debris from Superstorm Sandy included parts of structures, docks, plants and sand galore, and coverage for boats and debris were also addressed in his series.

Continue Reading Storm Damage to the Dock – Marina’s Insurance Excluded Coverage