A lawsuit by Olympus Insurance Company challenges Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation about issues of paying for property that matches following a repair. The lawsuit also challenges whether the Florida matching statute is a minimum limit of indemnity and if insurers can contract out of matching.
Continue Reading Is Florida’s Matching Statute a Minimum Limit of Required Indemnity or Can Insurers Contract Out of Matching?

Whether damaged property can be “matched” during a repair is a major property insurance adjustment issue. There is one Louisiana appellate case discussing the matching issue,1 and it found for the policyholder. A prior post, Provide the Right Proof so Your Insurer Will Pay Costs to Repair or Replace to Match Texture, Color, and Likeness, should be studied because the result may depend upon the policyholder’s presentation of loss.
Continue Reading Do Insurers In Louisiana Have To Match Damaged Property?

Greene v. USAA1 is probably the most cited case by first-party insurance carrier attorneys in Pennsylvania. It is an appellate level case that centered on whether an insurance carrier is required to replace a roof when the existing shingle is no longer in production, but shingles of “similar color, texture, function, and shape” are available. In Greene, the Superior Court of Pennsylvania (appellate) held that using shingles similar to the damaged shingles in function, color, and shape satisfied the insurer’s obligation to pay for repair or replacement with like construction.
Continue Reading Repair vs. Replacement in Pennsylvania

It is not uncommon for a hail or windstorm to cause damage to only one or two sides of a structure, leaving the remaining sides undamaged. Expecting replacement materials to match in color and quality, many policyholders are perplexed when their insurance carriers suggest they owe only for the damaged materials without any consideration for the altered appearance of the mismatched building.1 The result is magnified where damaged materials are no longer available, resulting in an obvious aesthetic difference between the undamaged and repaired areas of the structure.
Continue Reading Line of Sight Rule for Matching of Undamaged Materials in Iowa

Matching of damaged parts of a building is nothing new. This “Give Me Your Walls” episode from the classic Dick Van Dyke Show demonstrates a typical concern most property owners have about the aesthetics of matching property:

Some insurance companies are now selling “swiss cheese” and “cheap” insurance because they specifically say they will

Matching can be one of the more difficult and contested issues in the property insurance world. Some jurisdictions address the issue by statutes and regulations requiring the replacement of undamaged items when the damaged items cannot be replaced in a way that achieves a reasonably uniform appearance. Other jurisdictions address the issue through case law.
Continue Reading Connecticut’s Matching Statute

My New York colleague, Jonathan Wilkofsky, not long ago wrote a third edition to his book about appraisal, The Law and Procedure of Insurance Appraisal. If the appraisal cases in Florida and Colorado keep up at their frantic pace of publication, he is certainly going to have a fourth edition in the near future. A recent Florida case concerned the common issue of whether appraisal is appropriate to determine whether a roof can be repaired with matching shingles.1
Continue Reading Is Appraisal Appropriate to Determine If the Policyholder Is Entitled to Matching Shingles or a New Roof Replacement?

Insurance company law firm Matthiessen, Wickert & Lehrer have updated a thorough discussion of the adjustment issue of matching in an article, ”Matching Regulations” And Laws Affecting Homeowners’ Property Claims In All 50 States. From their view, they noted the current state of affairs regarding matching:

It remains one of the most difficult issues to deal with in the world of property insurance. Homeowners’ insurance policies usually contain a provision obligating the carrier to repair or replace an insured’s damaged property with ‘material of like kind and quality’ or with ‘similar material.’ They cover property damage resulting from ‘sudden and accidental’ losses. When damage caused by fire, smoke, water, hail, or other causes results in a small portion of a home or building being damaged (e.g., shingles, siding, carpet, cabinets, etc.), whether and when a carrier must replace non-damaged portions of a building in order for there to be a perfect match remains a point of contention. It is a matter of great importance to insurance companies because ‘matching’ problems with a slightly damaged section of roof or flooring can lead to a domino effect of tear out and replacement costs of many items which are not damaged. The problem of partial replacement is especially troubling where the damaged siding or shingles have been discontinued, making it virtually impossible to properly match. To replace only the damaged portion would result in an obvious aesthetic deficit due to a clear difference in the appearance of the replaced portion of the building from the portion that remains undamaged.

Would the entire structure need to be re-sided or the entire roof re-shingled? Or is it sufficient to replace just one wall of siding or just a few shingles? Whether or not the insurance company must pay to replace entire sections of the structure in order to bring the property back to its previous uniformity and aesthetics can bring various state insurance laws and regulations into play. On the one hand, many pundits claim that the terms of the insurance policy require the carrier to pay the cost to ‘repair or replace with similar construction for the same use on the premises.’ They argue that ‘similar’ doesn’t mean matching exactly. Others argue that coverage for ‘matching’ and ‘uniformity’ under a homeowner’s policy doesn’t exist without a specific endorsement. The truth lies somewhere in between and can vary greatly from state to state.
Continue Reading Matching Issues and New Endorsements Creating an Insurance Coverage Gap

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) drafted a model law named the “Unfair Claims Settlement Practices Act.” These standards include fair and rapid settlement of claims as well as the procedures and practices constituting unfair claim adjustment practices. Section 9 of the Model Act outlines language pertaining to the replacement of undamaged items when the damaged items cannot be replaced in a way that achieves a reasonably uninform appearance.
Continue Reading Matching Considerations in Utah