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Insurance companies fail to settle with wildfire victims

Insurance is often viewed by many in today's modern world as a necessary expense. It may be required by law or mandated as a condition of a private contractual agreement. For whatever reason people carry insurance, there are two certainties -- no one likes to pay the premiums, but they expect insurance companies to step up to the plate and take care of the covered losses. For one group of California residents, however, some insurers are intent on denying coverage.

In 2017, there was a string of unprecedented California wildfires, including one that devastated several thousand acres in Santa Rosa. Among the victims of the so-called Wine Country wildfire were over 30 homeowners from one mobile home park. Today, one year after the fire, they are still awaiting a settlement from their insurance companies.

Most of the homes in the park were completely destroyed. Some 30 other homes remain standing but are completely uninhabitable and irreparable. The insurance companies' delays and denials seem to be based on the fact the homes are standing and the contention that "government action" in closing the park led to the homes' damages. However, the government action that took place was closing the park after the fire had destroyed most of it.

Many of these homeowners are elderly and disabled, which makes the case particularly serious. In order to compel insurers to act in accordance with the terms of their contracts, it may be necessary for an insurance litigation lawyer to get involved. If necessary, legal counsel could file a lawsuit on behalf of a policyholder.

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