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Commercial property insurance: denying claims for wear and tear

On Behalf of | Nov 22, 2021 | Insurance

Your business has been damaged. You want it fixed. Fortunately, you have insurance to do just that. But what you may get instead is a fight you don’t want and don’t need, because your insurance company decides they don’t have an obligation to cover the damage. How do they get away with this?

Wear and tear policy exclusions

There was a time when commercial insurance policies covered very specific things, like damage from a fire. But over the years, coverage has expanded to include most any type of damage a business can suffer. To pay for these claims, insurance companies increased the premiums businesses paid. At the same time, however, insurance companies began inserting exclusions into their policies, in an attempt to limit the amount of money they paid out on claims.

Wear and tear exclusions are a primary example of how an insurance company can attempt to use a policy’s fine print to limit a claim or deny it outright. Oklahoma law imposes upon insurance companies a duty to act in good faith – but that doesn’t prevent a company from trying to tiptoe right up to the line of what’s acceptable.

Take roofing damage, for instance. Hail or other large-storm damage is common in Oklahoma and roofs can take a beating. If yours is damaged, you naturally file a claim so you can get it fixed. But then you find out that the insurance company denied your claim because, due to the age of the roof, it was already breaking down. They’ll say the storm didn’t cause the problem – it only revealed a problem that previously existed.

This type of claims denial is all too common, but you do not have to accept it. Seek the assistance of an experienced and knowledgeable professional who is accustomed to dealing with insurance companies. They can conduct a thorough investigation of the damage on your behalf, so that it’s not just your word against the insurance company’s.