Insurer's Late Notice Defense Fails on Summary Judgment

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Attorney Tred R. Eyerly analyzes Vintage Hospitality Group LLC v. Nat'l Trust Ins. Co.

December 13, 2021
Tred R. Eyerly - Insurance Law Hawaii

The insurer's motion for summary judgment to dismiss the claim because the insurer did not provide notice "as soon as practicable" was denied. Vintage Hospitality Group LLC v. Nat'l Trust Ins. Co., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 192651 (M.D. Ga. Oct. 6, 2021).

Vintage owned hotels, one of which was struck by a severe hailstorm on July 21, 2018. Vintage was not aware of roof damage until two months after the storm, and did not make the connection between the hailstorm and roof damage until February 2020, when it reported the damage to National. The claim was denied because it was not reported "as soon as practicable" as required by the policy.

Vintage sued and National moved for summary judgment.

Vintage did not notice the leaks until September 2018. The focus was on fixing the leaks, and connection to the hailstorm did not register. The leaks persisted over the next year and a half. A construction company was called in to evaluate the leaking roof. The construction company advised that the roof had experienced previous hail damage which was causing the leaks. At this point, Vintage connected the damage to the hailstorm. A claim was promptly submitted to National, which denied the claim.

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



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