Hurricane Sally is moving toward Mississippi Sound and Louisiana. Judges who are already working on Hurricane Laura claim will move efforts to Hurricane Sally. Although there is a legal authority that suggests that causation can be established in assessments in Louisiana, 1 Mississippi has long argued that causation issues will not be allowed in assessment and that a trial must decide these issues. 2
We noted this rule in a 2013 post, Snap Shot of Mississippi Appraisal Provisions in Insurance Policies . Since then, another Mississippi federal court has ruled that causation issues should not be assessed in Mississippi, suggesting that causation is a coverage issue: 3
It appears from the limited documentation and information provided that the primary dispute between the parties are the cause of the alleged property damage to the plaintiff's home. The defendant claims that a covered hazard caused only minor damage to property in the plaintiff's home, while the plaintiff claims that a covered hazard caused significant damage to his home. This presents a coverage issue, as opposed to just a valuation issue.
The purpose of an appraisal provision in a property insurance is not to determine the cause of the loss … An appraisal power is limited to determining the monetary value of property … The plaintiff has not shown that a mandatory appraisal is correct in the circumstances. The plaintiff's motion to compel the assessment and appointment of judges should be denied, and the plaintiff's motion to stay in litigation pending evaluation results should be denied as tough.
If you want to study more about causation in the assessment, I suggest you read, [1
Thought for the day
New Orleans lives by the water and fights it, a sandcastle on a sponge nine meters below sea level, where people did music of heartache, named their drinks for hurricanes and joked that one day you could tour the city by gondola.
1 St. Charles Parish Hosp. Service Dist. No. 1 v. United Fire and Cas. Co. 681 F.Supp.2d 748 (E.D. Louis. 2010).
2 Munn v. Nat’l Fire Ins. Co. of Hartford 237 Miss 641, 115 So.2d 54, 58 (1959); Sunquest Properties, Inc. v Nationwide Property and Cas. Co. No. 1: 08-cv-687, 2009 WL 2567222 * 2 (S.D. Miss. 2009).
3 Jassby vs. Scottsdale Ins. Co. No. 1:13-cv-336, 2014 WL 3773564, at * 1-2 (S.D. Miss., July 30, 2014).
4 Ashley Harris. Assessment of property insurance: Is it important to determine the reason for evaluating the amount of loss . 2012 J. Disp. Resol. 591.