Insurer Awarded Summary Judgment on Collapse Claim

Ruin house collapse

Tred R. Eyerly discusses S.O. Beach Corp. v. Great Am. Ins. Co.

January 6, 2020
Tred R. Eyerly - Insurance Law Hawaii

The Eleventh Circuit agreed with the insurer that there was no coverage for a collapse under the policy. S.O. Beach Corp. v. Great Am. Ins. Co.,2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 32569 (11th Cir. Oct. 31, 2019).

S.O. Beach Corporation and Larios on the Beach, Inc ("Larios") owned a building in Miami Beach. Sometime between march 4, 2012 and April 10, 2013, Larios discovered that parts of the first three floors of its building had caved in to varying degrees. The primary cause of the collapse was a wooden support beam that had severely rotted. Larios found a broken pipe that was gushing water onto the beam, causing deterioration. Larios was forced to evacuate the building until the damage was repaired.

Larios submitted a claim under its all-risk policy with Great American. The policy required that a collapse an "abrupt falling down or caving in of a building or any part of a building" to be covered. Before a coverage decision was made, Larios sued for breach of contract. The parties filed cross-motions for summary judgment. The district court granted Great American's motion and denied Larios' motion.

Mr. Eyerly may be contacted at te@hawaiilawyer.com



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