Do Not Forfeit Coverage Under Your Property Insurance Policy

Glasses lying on insurance policy document

Failure to comply with a post-loss obligation gives the insurer the argument that the insured materially breached the policy and, therefore, forfeited rights to coverage.

February 22, 2021
David Adelstein - Florida Construction Legal Updates

If you have read prior articles (see here and here as an example), then you know that when it comes to first-party property insurance policies, an insured must comply with post-loss obligations in the policy. Failure to comply with a post-loss obligation gives the insurer the argument that the insured materially breached the policy and, therefore, forfeited rights to coverage. Naturally, this is avoidable by ensuring post-loss obligations are complied with, ideally under the guidance of counsel and qualified public adjusters to ensure your rights are being preserved and maximized.

[W]hen an insurer has alleged, as an affirmative defense to coverage, and thereafter has subsequently established, that an insured has failed to substantially comply with a contractually mandated post-loss obligation, prejudice to the insurer from the insured’s material breach is presumed, and the burden then shifts to the insured to show that any breach of post-loss obligations did not prejudice the insurer.

Universal Property & Casualty Ins. Co. v. Horne, 46 Fla.L.Weekly D201b (Fla. 3d DCA 2021) quoting American Integrity Ins. Co. v. Estrada, 276 So.3d 905, 916 (Fla. 3d DCA 2019).

Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at dma@kirwinnorris.com



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