Welcome to The Sinkhole Blog a professional publication by the Law Offices of Joseph A. Porcelli, PA - FL, NJ, PA What If You Are Renting A Home With A Sinkhole? What Are Your Rights?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

What If You Are Renting A Home With A Sinkhole? What Are Your Rights?

We are well aware that Florida is sinkhole prone and that there are very many sinkhole damage claims throughout the state.  It has been well documented that since 2006, the annual number of sinkhole claims has tripled.

Renters may wrongfully think that sinkhole damage is a sole concern to the property owner alone.  Depending upon the severity of the sinkhole impacting your rental property, the sinkhole may cause thousands of dollars of damage to a tenant’s personal property as well and this damage is NOT covered by the landlord’s sinkhole loss coverage if the landlord has the appropriate insurance policy for the tenant-occupied dwelling.  For most tenant-occupied dwellings, the landlord’s sinkhole coverage only applies to the actual physical dwelling itself, not to its contents.

It is good practice for renters to obtain a comprehensive renter’s insurance policy, whether or not your rental property is located in a sinkhole prone area or not.  The most important part of your rental insurance policy is the personal property coverage, which is also called “contents coverage” insuring the contents of your rental dwelling.  Contents coverage premiums are based on the value of your personal property and the amount of your deductible.  Renter’s insurance covers other property damage losses, not just sinkholes, but also damage from fire, hail, vandalism and even lightning, to name a few.

Renter’s insurance provides other types of coverage like personal liability protection, which assists in the payment of legal costs and monetary judgements if you are sued.  Or, for example, if someone is injured at your rental apartment, rental insurance will pay for any lawsuit filed against you.  Some policies include medical payments coverage if bodily injury occurs in your rental property.

If a significant property damage loss occurs at your rental property (such as a sinkhole or fire or hurricane), you may be forced to move out of your rental property due to the extensive damage.  Additional living expenses are often included in renter’s insurance policies and your insurer may have to pay for necessary living expenses like a hotel, meals, laundry, etc.

Be sure to examine your renter’s insurance policy very carefully because some insurance carriers are trying to eliminate full coverage for sinkhole damage from your typical renter’s insurance policy.

Be aware that it may be difficult to collect on your policy for sinkhole damage.  Consult with a Florida sinkhole attorney if you are experiencing difficulty collecting on your renter’s policy or if the insurer is undervaluing your property damage loss due to sinkhole activity.

Retaining an attorney skilled and experienced in sinkhole litigation will provide you with the protection and guidance necessary for a successful sinkhole claim and to ensure that your interests are protected through this lengthy process.  We have represented countless individuals with sinkhole claims throughout the entire State of Florida, quite possibly someone you know.  We have the requisite experience that you need to help level the playing field with regard to your sinkhole claim.

At The Law Offices of Joseph A. Porcelli, P.A., you pay no legal fees, costs or expenses for our sinkhole legal representation unless we collect money for you.  We are here to help 24-7!  Call us toll-free at 1-877-529-9191 or on our 24-hour/7 day hotline at 727-457-8647, visit our Sinkhole Attorney website, or email us at LawyerFLA@aol.com or submit the free sinkhole case evaluation form today!


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