When a home or commercial building collapses, filing an insurance claim is only part of the overwhelming ordeal for property owners. Personal and professional life can be majorly disrupted and any injuries that resulted can be life-altering, all of which require your focus. Unfortunately, building collapse claims can be particularly complicated, since insurance companies often use narrow definitions of what constitutes collapse in order to limit insurance coverage.
That’s why you need an experienced New York building collapse attorney on your side to protect your best interests. If your home or building has been damaged by collapse, contact Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP at (212) 986-7353 or submit an online contact form for a free consultation.
Since a building collapse can be incredibly costly to repair, many first party property insurance policies rely on varying definitions of collapse in order to avoid providing coverage for such expensive damages. Some insurance policies will define building collapse under only one of the following terms:
- A building that is in imminent danger of collapsing due to significant damage to the overall structural integrity of the property.
- A building, or at least part of a building, has completely fallen down or been completely destroyed.
- A building has suddenly fallen or been destroyed without warning, such as cracking, sinking, or bulging.
The NY property damage lawyers at WRSH will be able to review your insurance policy and fight to ensure that you are treated fairly and that you are adequately compensated by your insurance provider. We are experienced at handling the appraisal and investigation process after a building collapse, and will fight to protect your legitimate insurance claim.
Many insurance plans will cover basic damages or "perils" that cause loss or destruction of a property, however, obtaining coverage for collapse can greatly depend on what caused all or part of the building to fall. There are numerous factors that can contribute to a building collapse, including:
- Foundation defects
- Fire damage
- Water damage
- Defective building materials
- Hidden insect or vermin damage
- Failure to maintain the building
- Design defects
- Hidden decay
There may even be more than one cause behind a building’s structural collapse, but only one or two may be covered by your insurance policy. It is often the case that insurance companies will also challenge whether the cause of a property collapse even falls within their coverage. A knowledgeable lawyer can help level the playing field against insurance providers attempting to break a binding contract or using deceptive tactics to mislead and shortchange their policy holders.
At Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, our attorneys are experienced at helping property owners obtain fair and just compensation after a building collapse. Not only will we help you investigate and file your property damage claim, but we will handle the negotiations with your insurance company on your behalf. Act as soon as possible and call us for a free consultation at (212) 986-7353.