While some areas sustained substantial wind damages from Hurricane Irene, a large portion of the losses are related to floods caused by the storm. Anyone insured through the National Flood Insurance Program should read their policies carefully and pay close attention to the time requirements mandated in the provisions.Continue Reading Irene Flood Victims Should Fill Out Proofs of Loss Now

Almost twelve years ago, Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal published its opinion in U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co. v. Romay, 744 So. 2d 467 (Fla. 3d DCA 1999). As of the writing of this post, Romay has been cited in no less than 44 published court opinions. Most of these cases, like the recent Citizens Prop. Ins. Corp. v. Gutierrez, 59 So. 3d 177 (Fla. 3d DCA 2011), cite the language from Romay which requires that “[t]he insured must comply with all of the policy’s post-loss obligations before the appraisal clause is triggered.” Unfortunately, this statement is only half of Romay. This is the half that focuses on the insured’s obligations. There is another side of Romay that focuses on the insurer’s obligations, and although this other side is not often discussed, it recently found its way into a published opinion from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida in 200 Leslie Condo. Ass’n, Inc. v. QBE Ins. Corp., No. 10-61984-CIV, 2011 WL 2470344 (S.D. Fla. June 21, 2011).Continue Reading The Other Side of Romay: Insurer Post-Loss Obligations and Appraisal

A standard clause in most property insurance policies requires an insured to sit for an examination under oath (EUO) if the insurance company requests one during the claims process. This clause is often listed as one of the insured’s duties after loss. A separate clause, sometimes entitled “Suit Against Us,” may also require that the insured comply with its post-loss duties before suit may be filed against the insurer. The question of whether an insured condominium association complied with its duty to sit for an EUO before filing suit was one of the issues discussed in the case of El-Ad Enclave at Miramar Condo. Ass’n, Inc. v. Mt. Hawley Ins. Co., 752 F. Supp. 2d 1282 (S.D. Fla. 2010).Continue Reading Must an Insured “Sit” for an EUO Before Filing Suit if It Has Been Requested?

Just last week, the Third District Court of Appeals issued another ruling involving entitlement to appraisal in Citizens Property Insurance Corp., v. Mango Hill Condo. Association 12, Inc., No. 3D10-2014 (Fla. 3d DCA February 9, 2011). The Third District has been busy the last couple of months with rulings on the issue of appraisal, and one carrier in particular seems to be filing many of the appeals. I wanted to introduce the recent ruling, and there will likely be some follow up discussion in the weeks to come.Continue Reading Recent Third District Court of Appeals Ruling on Appraisal

As I previously mentioned in Examinations Under Oath Can Be Tricky For Associations, most insurance policies have a requirement that an insured sit for an examination under oath upon the insurer’s request. As I stated last week, failing to attend an examination under oath may be grounds for an insurer to deny coverage.Continue Reading When Can An Insurer Require An Examination Under Oath?

All insurance policies place certain obligations on the insured in the event of a loss. While most policyholders do not understand all of the terms and conditions of their policy, these post-loss obligations are extremely important. Failing to fulfill these obligations may be grounds for an insurer to deny an otherwise valid claim in some circumstances; therefore, all board members should read and understand what to do after a loss occurs.Continue Reading Examinations Under Oath Can Be Difficult For Associations

In Florida, discovery in breach of contract actions usually centers around the mystical “claim file” which insurers guard more closely than their first born child. As most who read this blog already know, the “claim file” has been held to be generally protected by Florida courts, and usually undiscoverable in a breach of contract action.Continue Reading Florida Southern District Court Upholds Condominium Association’s Right to Bad Faith Discovery

One of the most daunting tasks in submitting an insurance claim is the production of documents. Most insurance policies have language similar to the following:

The insured, as often as may be reasonably required, shall produce for examination all writing, books of account, bills, invoices and other vouchers or certified copies thereof if originals be lost, at such reasonable time and place as may be designated by the company or its representatives, and shall permit extracts and copies thereof to be made.

Continue Reading The Cooperation Clause and Document Production: A Condominium Association’s Difficult Task