Watch the full video at https://rumble.com/v2s87ye-second-attempt-at-same-argument-fails.html and at https://youtu.be/hV3I6Li66v8
DOING THE SAME THING TWICE AND EXPECTING A DIFFERENT RESULT IS THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY
The plaintiff alleged that on October 28, 2020, Hurricane Zeta caused significant damage to his property. The plaintiff alleged that Southern conducted an inspection that constituted “satisfactory evidence of loss,” but that Southern failed to adjust the claim or provide compensation to the plaintiff after the inspection. The plaintiff argued that he had to hire his own experts and repair estimates. He was not paid and sued.
IN Todd M. Korbel v. Republic Fire And Casualty Insurance Company And Southern Underwriters Insurance CompanyNo. 2:21-CV-2214, United States District Court, ED Louisiana (May 31, 2023) resolved the dispute.
The plaintiff sued for damages. Southern generally denied the allegations and asserted a number of affirmative defenses including that the plaintiff did not “occupy” the property and is therefore not entitled to coverage under the policy.
Residence according to the policy
The plain, ordinary and generally prevailing meaning of the word “dwell” requires more than buying a dwelling or intending to move into it. Plaintiff claimed that he received mail, including correspondence from Southern, at the Property, that he paid water and electric bills for the Property in his name, that he was at the Property every day doing work or checking on the Property, that he had stored any possessions at the Property , and that he had homestead exemption on the Property.
As the Fifth Circuit has previously explained to the plaintiff himself in a prior suit, this evidence is insufficient to create an issue of material fact as to whether the plaintiff was a resident of or on the property. In a previous case, the plaintiff brought similar damages and statutory bad faith claims under Louisiana law after a house he had purchased but not moved into was damaged during Hurricane Katrina. The insurer raised the same lack of coverage as a defense to the plaintiff’s claim for certain damages, arguing that the plaintiff did not live on the property as required by the policy.
Although Korbel apparently spent a lot of time working on the house and thought it would be his future residence, this evidence was insufficient to establish residence. Given that plaintiff kept only a minimal amount of furniture there and did not engage in recreational activities in the house, but rather went to the property to work on or check on the house, the facts show that he did not live there.
In fact, plaintiff admitted in his deposition that he did not move into the property but was still living in another location at the time the property was affected by Hurricane Zeta. Accordingly, the plaintiff “was not a “resident” of the property and is not entitled to coverage under the policy.
Homeowner’s insurance policies require the insured to live in the premises that are the subject of the insurance. Because the evidence established Korbel did not reside in the premises but only visited for purposes other than residence and it was in no habitable condition, he did not meet the requirement of residence as he did not in a previous case he brought to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. He could have purchased a policy for a property during the construction period but did not. Once he lost on the same argument, it was unwise to present the same losing argument to USDC which had failed on appeal to the Fifth Circuit.
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