Pierce & Mandell, P.C.

11 Beacon Street, Suite 800
Boston, Massachusetts 02108-3002

Phone: (617) 720-2444
Fax: (617) 720-3693

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Storm-Related Business Loss - What to do When Your Insurer Denies Your Claim, Boston, MA

Thursday, March 14, 2013
By: Dennis M. Lindgren

In an attempt to insulate themselves from the vagaries of unpredictable weather, companies typically (and wisely) carry various types of insurance, including but not limited to, polices to protect against property/building damage, inventory damage, equipment/vehicle damage,  and business interruption. Nevertheless, the best laid plans of even the most prudent company can easily be thwarted by adjusters and carriers that deny claims that pursuant to the terms of the policy, should have been allowed (at least in part).
 
If your company has incurred damages, and had to pay remediation and repair costs as the result of a severe weather event, or severe weather has caused damages which have resulted in the  interruption of the regular operations of your business, the denial of the business insurance claim can be almost as destructive  as the underlying damage itself.  When this happens, it is important to remember that your insurer does not get the last word on whether a loss is ultimately covered or not.  Your insurance policy is nothing more or less than a contract, and like any contract, its interpretation is a question of law that can be challenged before, and ultimately decided by, a Court of law.  In Massachusetts, Courts often take a pro-insured view of coverage, and in light of M.G.L. 93A (commonly referred to as "the Consumer Protection Act"), insurance carriers can be subject to awards of multiple damages and attorney's fees if they have engaged in unreasonable settlement practices.  In short, carriers can sometimes be persuaded (or forced) to reverse insurance decisions.   An initial consultation with experienced legal counsel is therefore often time and money well spent for an insured.

If you have questions regarding the material discussed above, please contact Dennis Lindgren at (617) 240-0208, or via email at dennis@piercemandell.com.


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