We are often asked by insured persons about the time frame within which they must bring a lawsuit against their insurance company in connection with property damage caused by a storm where the insurance company refuses to pay for the damage completely or has refused to report the damage. This is called the statute of limitations in the legal field and usually begins at the time of the breach or failure to do what is the subject of the insurance contract. 1
In Nebraska, the Statute of Limitation on Infringement or Failure to Pay an Insurance Claim Related to Property Damage requires that all legal action be filed within five years of the date of loss.
Nebraska Charter § 25-205
(1) In addition to the provisions of subsection 2 of this section, an action for a specialty or agreement, contract or written promise or foreign judgment may be brought within five years …
While some states allow an insurance company to reduce the limitation period, Nebraska provides additional protection to policyholders by presenting an insurance company from reducing the five-year limitation period through insurance language. any insurance contract or insurance contract which contains a provision, provision or agreement that such insurance shall be construed in accordance with the laws of any other State or country, or any provision limiting the time within which an action may be brought for less than the ordinary period; of the time provided for in the limits of this permit, unless otherwise provided in this chapter.
It is important to understand that the coverage under Nebraska Statutes 25-205 and § 44-357 applies to insurance issued and delivered in Nebraska. Therefore, Nebraska policyholders should always request a certified copy of their insurance after each loss event in order to understand the coverage, conditions and obligations required of them under the insurance contract. This includes a thorough examination of whether the insurance policy seeks to reduce the time frame for bringing an action for any dispute over insufficient or non-payment of a property insurance claim, in which case consultation with an attorney with Nebraska property management experience should be strongly considered.
1 Canavaugh v. City of Omaha 580 NW2d 541, 544 (1998).