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Homeowner cites 1 policy clause, insurance company cites another

Often, a homeowner’s dispute with his or her insurance company can come down to a battle of clauses within the policy. Today, we will discuss a case from outside of Minnesota that illustrates what can happen when the insurance company uses one clause in the policy to deny another.

According to WRDW-TV, the story began last summer, when the homeowner noticed that water was pooling in the middle of his back porch. He called his homeowners insurance company to make a claim, but the company, USAA, denied the claim. It claimed that the issue was due to “inadequate construction” and thus the sagging porch was not covered.

The porch collapsed in November, causing nearly $70,000 in damages. The homeowner had an independent contractor inspect the damage, and the contractor told him that decayed wood underneath the porch caused the collapse. The homeowner called USAA again, citing his policy’s clause covering collapses.

But USAA denied him twice more, both times citing the inadequate construction clause. The homeowner has hired an attorney to try to get USAA to honor the collapse clause in his policy.

Cases like this are a good reminder that despite what they might say in their advertising, insurance companies’ top priority is making money, not helping their clients in times of trouble. When your homeowners insurance company denies your legitimate claim, the prospect of paying for repairs yourself can be overwhelming. But a denial is the not the end of the road, if you choose to hire an experienced attorney and fight for your home.

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