Long Term Seepage vs. Sudden And Accidental Water Damage. Am I covered?

Most insurance carriers have an exclusion for long term seepage or water damage. Under Exclusion of the Policy, they usually have the language to deny your claim for damage caused long term seepage. Seepage, meaning continuous or repeated seepage or leakage of water over a period of weeks, months, or years. This can happen in many places around your home, such as under your sink, plumbing in walls, in the pipes in your foundation slab, and more.

Sudden and Accidental Water Damage describes a situation comparable to a burst pipe, an appliance malfunction, or any unexpected discharge of water or steam. For some policies to grant coverage, the two main components that need to be clear in the cause of damage are “sudden” (not over a period time) and “accidental” (unexpected)

Why is the recent 2018 partial summary judgement in Hicks vs. American Integrity Insurance of Florida so important?

Many policies in Florida have language that states, “We do not insure for loss caused constant or repeated seepage or leakage of water over a period of 14 or more days.”

If you read the case, there is a partial summary judgement in Hicks favor provided that for losses occurring after the first thirteen days, the burden will be on AIIC (The Insurance Carrier) to prove that a particular loss was sustained after the thirteenth day and is therefore not covered under the language of the exclusion provision.”

Here is the link from Find Law to read more!

You will find it reads, “We, therefore, reverse the summary judgment entered in favor of AIIC and remand this case to the trial court to enter partial summary judgment in Hicks’s favor on the sole issue of coverage within the first thirteen days of the leak, the extent of the losses to be determined at trial. As for losses occurring after the first thirteen days, the burden will be on AIIC to prove that a particular loss was sustained after the thirteenth day and is therefore not covered under the language of the exclusion provision.

What is seepage? It can mean many things. It can be a slow plumbing leak, wax seal leak, plumbing supply line leak, it can be slow seepage or long term seepage that then becomes a pipe burst, and then your house is flooded. Then you have to remember if you have no power after a hurricane you will have high levels of humidity and heat and will most likely have mold growth within the first few days. Mold will grow after a water loss in moist and humid conditions. If you have a seepage claim or denial for long term seepage please give one or our Experienced Private Adjusters a call today.

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