Cruisers Forum
 


Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on Cruisers Forums. Advertise Here
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 16-10-2017, 16:08   #16
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 281
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Suing an insurance company would be the last thing I would like to do. They have endless with resources and will use them. They calculate with some losses. For you a loss can be extremely expensive and destroy your economy for the rest of your life. And they know it!
Oceansailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 17:07   #17
Registered User
 
S/V Illusion's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Lakewood Ranch, FLORIDA
Boat: Alden 50, Sarasota, Florida
Posts: 3,091
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Having been through this a long time ago, there are two facts which any lawyer will ask you:
1. Why didn't you file a plan?, and
2. Does you policy stipulate that as a prerequisite to coverage?

Your likelihood of success in a claim turns on these issues.
S/V Illusion is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 18:25   #18
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Southern California
Boat: Catalina 320
Posts: 1,160
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

The bar association in every county has a referral service where you can speak to an attorney in the field required. For $50 you get 30 minutes to speak with an attorney, usually they won't read any documents so be familiar with the terms of your policy so you can explain or answer questions accurately. They will explain your options and chances better than us.
Lawyer Referral Service - Dade County Bar Association
Calif.Ted is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 18:31   #19
Registered User
 
susswein's Avatar

Join Date: May 2012
Location: live in Utah, Sail in sea of cortez
Boat: Balboa 27
Posts: 174
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Are you SURE you don't remember filing a plan that somehow got lost in the mail?
susswein is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 19:55   #20
Registered User
 
Sbonder's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: San Francisco Bay Area for me. The boat is in the Caribbean.
Boat: X5+ Catamaran, 53’
Posts: 47
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

I am a lawyer and specialize in litigation. Based on the information you gave I can give zero actual legal advice. To make any recommendation requires a lot more information that you are give or going to get on this forum.

I would need to read the contract (which may have a choice of law and venue provision), then once I know the applicable law review the cases in that jurisdiction. I would also need some sense of whether the plan would have actually impacted the underwriting decision, which is almost as important as whether the policy requires such a plan.

That is a very long way of saying -go talk to a lawyer in your area and bring all documents with you. Most good lawyers will do a free consultation. Do not be dissuaded by the fact that insurers have lawyers. Most are used to getting sued and most of their lawyers are reasonable folks who will evaluate a claim with the adjuster and settle if possible. I do not represent insurers and am often adverse to them, but they are not the monolithic villain many think they are. It is just a numbers game to them.
Sbonder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 21:44   #21
Registered User
 
tomfl's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Florida
Boat: Seawind 1000xl
Posts: 2,592
Images: 15
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
You submit a hurricane plan for specific hurricanes, not a general all purpose one when you first secure a policy.

SNIP
That was not the case with my policy, I just had to submit a general plan one time. I suspect this is policy specific and some policies may require a plan for each hurricane.


As a couple of posters have noted without reading the contract in question we don't know all the details of the OP's contract.
tomfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 22:14   #22
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Tampa Fl
Boat: Catalina 36 / Morgan 33 OI
Posts: 166
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

There are some " Insurance Claims Advocates" ... vultures that know how to haunt the insurers and know the laws and codes and will work on your behalf for 20% of the proceeds, instead of the 30% that Attorneys get if they win any money from the case.
You could find them online or the phone book? . Call and speak with them, explain your case and get some ideas.
You are saying that paying premiums and preparing your vessel for a named storm was not enough for them??. Did the company specify how to prepare the vessel, meaning, move away from a marina, anchor a certain way, haul out to dry land, double lines, remove canvas and electronics specifically, etc?. You have pictures of the preparations?
I am going through my own case now on a Homeowner's claim and learned a lot from them, ( Advocates) they do not perform miracles but may be able to help with ideas. No cost till you hire them. I mentioned this to my claims adjustor and was told that the Insurance Co. would rather give me the money for my claim than pay it to them!.
Check it out..... "Insurance Claim Advocate".
Best wishes for your good outcome. Knowledge is power.
slowpoker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 23:30   #23
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Denmark (Winter), Helsinki (Summer); Cruising the Baltic Sea this year!
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 32,971
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Never sued one myself, but in my misspent youth I used to do legal work for insurance companies. They were fabulous clients, and defending insurance cases was always fun, because they were always willing to pay for the best legal research and best preparation money could buy. I don't think we ever lost a single case, in some years of doing this.

If you "go legal" on them you will have a hard row to hoe, as they do tend to press their cases hard as a matter of principle. They hire top law firms. I doubt if you could find anyone willing to take such a case on a contingency basis, so it will be expensive.

Nevertheless, I think you should talk to a few lawyers and see what they say about the particular case in light of the law of your state, and the particular policy language. If you have some kind of case, it might be possible to make a credible threat of litigation and then negotiate some kind of settlement. If you don't have any kind of case, then you are kind of screwed. I'm sorry to tell you that, but the policy terms form part of your contract with the insurance company, and if they have a clear legal right to not pay you, even if it's outrageously unfair and immoral, it will be hard to force them to do so, if they don't want to.
__________________
"You sea! I resign myself to you also . . . . I guess what you mean,
I behold from the beach your crooked inviting fingers,
I believe you refuse to go back without feeling of me;
We must have a turn together . . . . I undress . . . . hurry me out of sight of the land,
Cushion me soft . . . . rock me in billowy drowse,
Dash me with amorous wet . . . . I can repay you."
Walt Whitman
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-10-2017, 23:36   #24
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Denmark (Winter), Helsinki (Summer); Cruising the Baltic Sea this year!
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 32,971
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sbonder View Post
. . . Do not be dissuaded by the fact that insurers have lawyers. Most are used to getting sued and most of their lawyers are reasonable folks who will evaluate a claim with the adjuster and settle if possible. I do not represent insurers and am often adverse to them, but they are not the monolithic villain many think they are. It is just a numbers game to them.
This is good advice.

It is also my experience, from the other side of the table, that most insurance companies will pay if there is a reasonable basis for it, and they will often overlook small technicalities in order to do so. They are definitely not "monolithic villains" -- they just conserve the capital of the company (or of the insureds themselves, if it is a mutual insurance company, and in both cases, they are conserving the premium rates of other insureds as much as their own profits) by paying only claims which are actually insured under the terms of the policies. A numbers game indeed, and not necessarily evil one.
__________________
"You sea! I resign myself to you also . . . . I guess what you mean,
I behold from the beach your crooked inviting fingers,
I believe you refuse to go back without feeling of me;
We must have a turn together . . . . I undress . . . . hurry me out of sight of the land,
Cushion me soft . . . . rock me in billowy drowse,
Dash me with amorous wet . . . . I can repay you."
Walt Whitman
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 06:25   #25
Registered User
 
denverd0n's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 4,942
Images: 6
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

As an aside, for anyone considering filing a lawsuit for almost any reason, I would suggest reading the book "Bleak House," by Charles Dickens. A classic of English literature, and a darned good story besides. But the relevant point here is that the underlying theme is how -- 150 years ago, just like today -- in most lawsuits, the attorneys are the only real winners.

Or consider that old saying... "One attorney in a town and he'll go broke. Two attorneys in a town and they'll both get rich."

Just something to think about.
denverd0n is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 09:23   #26
Registered User
 
taxwizz's Avatar

Join Date: May 2013
Location: Toronto
Boat: Small yellow rubber ducky
Posts: 700
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Sounds like you were victimized by the injustice of the Small Print Smokescreen.
I once had a client who asked me to look over a 60 page purchase contract he had written. 59 pages were the usual ********, but hidden on page 49 was the "Reduction of Purchase Price" clause that reduced the price by 60%. He was surprised that I found it, because the vendor's lawyers had not.

How often do you read the terms that require a click to "Approve" on software agreements or website access? Never?

I think that the courts recognize this and may be sympathetic to you. Maybe.
taxwizz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 09:36   #27
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Boat in Greece, Beach cat in Israel
Boat: Lagoon 400 & Nacra F18 beach cat
Posts: 1,399
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

I am not a lawyer, however I am a marine surveyor with some insurance experience and long time ago worked 6 years as a middle/senior level manager of an insurance company.
To the point: the company usually seeks a formal clause in your policy (i.e. contract) that you have breached to avoid paying a claim. This is an automatic response and now the wait to see what will you do. Your first step should be a short consultation with a knowledgeable attorney.
The law in each country may be different but in my country you may have a good cause to enforce the contract if you can prove that you did prepare a plan conforming to the policy requirements and your only fault is failure of submission of the plan that may be presented as technicality v.s. the preparation of the plan that is the essential requirement.
This may help, if the submission of the plan is not referred to in the policy as substantial requirement, a breach of which cancels insurance. These and similar points are best reviewed by a lawyer as I have already stressed above.
If my point above holds water in your jurisdiction the company will offer a settlement out of court then it will be a haggling spectacle.
__________________
Mark, S/Y Bat-Yam
meirriba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 09:51   #28
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Denmark (Winter), Helsinki (Summer); Cruising the Baltic Sea this year!
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 32,971
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by taxwizz View Post
Sounds like you were victimized by the injustice of the Small Print Smokescreen.
I once had a client who asked me to look over a 60 page purchase contract he had written. 59 pages were the usual ********, but hidden on page 49 was the "Reduction of Purchase Price" clause that reduced the price by 60%. He was surprised that I found it, because the vendor's lawyers had not.

How often do you read the terms that require a click to "Approve" on software agreements or website access? Never?

I think that the courts recognize this and may be sympathetic to you. Maybe.
Slipping a major commercial term into the small print of a contract and hoping the other side doesn't catch would be exceedingly sleazy, and I never saw such a thing done, not even once, during my years of law practice. There would be no point to it, anyway -- if it's a B2B contract where both sides are represented, the other side would simply not miss such a thing. The first thing the lawyers get paid to do is read every word. If a lawyer was paid to read a contract and missed a major commercial term in it, that's malpractice. In a B2C contract with boilerplate, you would likewise not do such a thing -- because judges wouldn't let you get away with it -- any element of deceit can be used to show that there was no meeting of the minds, which is an element of contract formation, and can even be a tort.

And this is certainly not what happened here. The requirement to file a hurricane plan (and follow it) is a quite standard, normal, ordinary clause for boat insurance in hurricane zones, certainly nothing which was deceitfully hidden. The OP should have taken care to fulfill the requirements to the letter.

That being said, however, the law abhors a forfeiture, and the OP might have a case if he can show that he acted in good faith and actually had and actually followed a hurricane plan. If filing the plan was not material to the outcome, it might not be a legal basis for denying the claim.

Anyway, a good lawyer can figure this out and advise whether there is anything worth pursuing or not -- I would certainly have at least an initial consultation, if I were in the OP's position.
__________________
"You sea! I resign myself to you also . . . . I guess what you mean,
I behold from the beach your crooked inviting fingers,
I believe you refuse to go back without feeling of me;
We must have a turn together . . . . I undress . . . . hurry me out of sight of the land,
Cushion me soft . . . . rock me in billowy drowse,
Dash me with amorous wet . . . . I can repay you."
Walt Whitman
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 09:51   #29
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Eastport, MS
Boat: 1996 Carver 355 Aft Cabin
Posts: 45
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

I am an attorney, but do not practice in your area. The advice denverDon gate is the same advise I would give. Good Luck.
Capt Jerry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-10-2017, 10:27   #30
Registered User
 
Suijin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Bumping around the Caribbean
Boat: Valiant 40
Posts: 4,626
Re: Suing an Insurance Company

Quote:
Originally Posted by susswein View Post
Are you SURE you don't remember filing a plan that somehow got lost in the mail?
Suggesting the OP attempt to commit fraud is not good advice to give on a public forum. For either of you.
Suijin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
insurance

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
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 13:53
Rebel Heart Crew Suing..... h20man Our Community 428 12-07-2014 08:52

Advertise Here


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 15:09.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.