Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 16-10-2017, 11:57   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Miami-FL
Boat: Hunter 42
Posts: 6
Suing an Insurance Company

Hi fellows,

Unfortunately my boat was severely damaged by Irma hurricane while She was anchored in South Florida.

I started the claim with the insurance Company. After few weeks, they denied to cover any reparation expenses for the boat.

The reason for this, is the policy asked a preparation plan, BEFORE the hurricane arrive.

I did not send this plan but I did prepare the boat as secure as I could. I have proofs of that.

IMHO, it is not fair to deny any coverage to my boat for the disaster. The payment was promptly charged monthly and they didn't send any remainder of this bureaucratic requirement.

My question is, if someone have any experience suing an Insurance Company for similar reasons?

Thanks in advance
__________________

__________________
adgarcia2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 12:28   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Huntsville, AL
Boat: Brewer Canyon 43 steel #2
Posts: 74
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

If it is in the policy in writing then you are probably out of luck.
__________________

__________________
toodleoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 12:37   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 604
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

1) They have a team of corporate lawyers on staff. You will need to hire your own, which you will pay regardless of outcome.

2) You policy IS your contract. It is the reason they mail you a printed copy. It is your responsibility to read, understand and comply with it.

If the policy stated that you needed to proactively forward them a copy of your preparation plan, and you did not, then they are in their right to deny.

Due diligence goes beyond boat preparation. It would have included reviewing your policy and calling your agent several days prior to the event. Reason being, if you are unclear on the legalese of the policy your agent may be able to clarify. If the agent cannot, then the agent will act as your liaison and discuss it with the underwriter, who will clarify.

My apologies. This was not meant to be harsh, just realistic. My sympathies for your loss. I hope you and your loved ones are well amidst this tragedy.
__________________
Shrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 12:38   #4
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,148
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Don't give up. You are not necessarily out of luck.

Check with an attorney and file a complaint with your state Insurance Commissioner.

Insurance companies listen big time to those that regulate them.

https://eapps.naic.org/cis/fileComplaintMap.do
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 12:38   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Florida
Boat: Pearson 35
Posts: 62
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Care to share who the carrier was?
__________________
waterman480 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 13:00   #6
Registered User
 
Privilege's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Bermuda
Boat: Privilege 435
Posts: 352
Images: 12
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

I don't know how things work in your jurisdiction but in my part of the world, and many others, you do not need a lawyer to file a civil suit. It's usually pretty straightforward and easy to do. It strikes me that any breach of your contract does not automatically exonerate them from their agreement to insure you, especially if you have proof that you made every effort to ensure the safety of your boat. It may well be that they are on strong ground if you breached the contract but don't take it lying down. You have a reasonable claim.
__________________
Privilege is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 13:09   #7
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,148
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

I agree with Privilege. File your complaint with your state insurance commissioner. See if you get a response from either the insurance company, the commissioner or both and then make a decision on whether or not you need to hire an attorney.

Interesting how insurance companies can say they are your best friends when they want your money and your business but frequently become your biggest enemy when you file a claim.

I am also curious to know which insurance company this is. It's not that they have done anything right or wrong at this point. That is for a judge or the commissioner to decide.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 13:54   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Miami-FL
Boat: Hunter 42
Posts: 6
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Thanks for your comments fellows!!

For the good and bad ones!!!!

I promise I'll give the complete name of insurer and carrier as soon as I can
__________________
adgarcia2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 14:00   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Fiji Airways/ Lake Ontario
Boat: Want a B430!
Posts: 888
Images: 2
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
Don't give up. You are not necessarily out of luck.

Check with an attorney and file a complaint with your state Insurance Commissioner.

Insurance companies listen big time to those that regulate them.

https://eapps.naic.org/cis/fileComplaintMap.do


This.

And you don't need to tell anyone that you didn't give them a plan. That's for them to prove that they didn't receive a plan (and failed to follow up). The lawyer can argue the insignificance of any such "plan"- you STFU.

File a complaint. it's free. And insurance companies don't like being hounded by the government- turn over a rock, and you'll find something.
__________________
Tetepare is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 14:02   #10
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,148
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

You might also have a little more leverage over the insurance company if you threaten to name them on a very popular cruising website if they choose to not do you justice. You can also threaten to go to social media for the same thing. For now, be nice. No threats.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 14:19   #11
Registered User
 
tomfl's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Florida
Boat: Seawind 1000xl
Posts: 1,955
Images: 10
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

My understanding is a hurricane plan is fairly standard in insurance contracts. I was a little in awe of what I needed to do to complete one for my policy but did a little research and talked to the company. It turned out to be little more than a formality. Mine was only a couple of boiler plate paragraphs along the lines of I will clear the deck and batten the hatches and store the boat in a marina with lots of lines in a spider web configuration. Took maybe half an hour to do everything including the research.

Not saying I like what happened to you, just that I did read my contract and acted accordingly.
__________________
tomfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 14:29   #12
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
Boat: Leopard 39
Posts: 332
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

When an insurer makes an outright claim denial decision like this, it's usually based upon contract law as it applies to your policy, and they have teams of lawyers advising their claims adjusters who specialize in these issues. Your suing them will not intimidate, this all part of the cost of doing business for them; and their attorneys are already on staff and paid for. Similarly, complaints to your state insurance commissioner's office will ultimately avail naught if you have not lived up to your responsibilities under the contract you signed. While some states allow for small claims actions without an attorney, most have dollar limits for that which might obviate this as an alternative; and do you really want to face off with their expert attorney? Outside of small claims, you're looking at huge legal fees, lots of indigestion, and time. Some would tell you that as you move through the system, you may encounter deeper levels of victimization. I don't know the dollar value of your loss, but I would advise that you arrange a free initial consultation with an attorney who does contract law/insurance. Bring your policy and correspondence. If you have a clear leg to stand on, he or she will be able to tell you then and there. Be sure that it all makes sense to you before going ahead. Remember too that attorneys don't make a living by turning AWAY clients, and the last thing that you need now is adding to your losses with a futile attempt to recoup them.
__________________
danielamartindm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 15:50   #13
Registered User
 
Island Time O25's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 1,993
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Worse comes to worse I would try to sue them for the premiums you have paid for the past years. The theory being that if they did not cover this particular hurricane damage (especially if they required you submit something which you did not submit) you were not really insured to begin with and thus they have not earned those premiums. Some states have more strict rules/oversight over the insurance companies then others so such an approach may work there.
__________________
Island Time O25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 16:35   #14
Registered User
 
Suijin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Annapolis MD; currently in Oriental NC
Boat: Valiant 40
Posts: 2,804
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by Island Time O25 View Post
Worse comes to worse I would try to sue them for the premiums you have paid for the past years. The theory being that if they did not cover this particular hurricane damage (especially if they required you submit something which you did not submit) you were not really insured to begin with and thus they have not earned those premiums. Some states have more strict rules/oversight over the insurance companies then others so such an approach may work there.
You submit a hurricane plan for specific hurricanes, not a general all purpose one when you first secure a policy. He was covered until he violated the contract by not submitting for approval a hurricane plan for the actual storm that destroyed his boat.

Besides, the cost of suing them would be substantially more than the sum total of his premiums to date, I have little doubt about that.
__________________
Suijin is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 16:39   #15
Registered User
 
denverd0n's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 3,930
Images: 6
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

You need to talk to an attorney, not a bunch of strangers on an internet forum. If the attorney thinks you have a good case, they will probably take it on spec, for a percentage. If they insist that you pay them separate from any judgement, that means they don't expect you to win. In the latter case, personally, I would just drop it.

Good luck.
__________________

__________________
denverd0n is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
insurance

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
California communities suing for polluters to pay for storm damage DeepFrz Our Community 306 09-10-2017 14:53
Rebel Heart Crew Suing..... h20man Our Community 428 12-07-2014 09:52



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:32.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.