Hurricane Ian introduced a big storm surge with it. In some areas, the storm surge was reported to be as much as 15 toes. After all, this raises insurance coverage questions resembling what induced the damages to the property, the excessive winds related to the storm, or the flooding. This will probably be a significant matter of dispute in insurance coverage claims over the subsequent few years. Nevertheless, Florida’s Valued Coverage Legislation might be able to supply some steering.
(a) Within the occasion of the complete loss of any constructing, construction, cell residence as outlined in s. 320.01(2), or manufactured constructing as outlined in s. 553.36(13), positioned on this state and insured by any insurer as to a lined peril, within the absence of any change rising the danger with out the insurer’s consent and within the absence of fraudulent or prison fault on the a part of the insured or one performing in her or his behalf, the insurer’s legal responsibility below the coverage for such complete loss, if attributable to a lined peril, shall be within the sum of money for which such property was so insured as specified within the coverage and for which a premium has been charged and paid.
(b) The intent of this subsection is to not deprive an insurer of any correct protection below the coverage, to create new or further protection below the coverage, or to require an insurer to pay for a loss attributable to a peril aside from the lined peril. In furtherance of such legislative intent, when a loss was induced partly by a lined peril and partly by a noncovered peril, paragraph (a) doesn’t apply. In such circumstances, the insurer’s legal responsibility below this part shall be restricted to the quantity of the loss attributable to the lined peril. Nevertheless, if the lined perils alone would have induced the full loss, paragraph (a) shall apply. The insurer isn’t chargeable for greater than the quantity essential to restore, rebuild, or substitute the construction following the full loss, after contemplating all different advantages truly paid for the full loss.
Within the case of Hurricane Ian, there’s a mixture of lined and noncovered forces. The usual wind coverage will exclude damages attributable to flood. Consequently, Florida’s Valued Coverage Legislation won’t apply except the lined peril alone would have induced the full loss.
If a plaintiff can show that wind alone induced a complete loss earlier than the storm surge arrived, the Valued Coverage Legislation would require an insurer to pay the coverage proceeds.1
The subsequent urgent query is, “what constitutes a complete loss?” Sadly, the Florida Legislature, in its infinite knowledge, presents no steering. Thankfully, Merlin Legislation Group legal professional Shawn Marker addressed this query in his weblog submit: Navigating Florida’s Valued Coverage Legislation – What’s a Complete Loss.
If in case you have any questions on your loss or the applicability of Florida’s Valued Coverage Legislation, contact the attorneys on the Merlin Legislation Group.
1Residents Prop. Ins. Corp. v. Ashe, 50 So.3d 645, 652 (Fla. 1st DCA 2010).