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Citizens Insurance required to pay scheduled value for damaged rugs

Menashe and Aliza Shemesh bought a "fine art" personal property rider from Citizens Insurance to cover two handmade silk carpets. The parties agreed on a value for the rugs in a schedule attached to the rider.  The rugs were damaged when a lit candelabrum was dropped on them.  When presented with a claim, Citizens disputed the value, sought an appraisal and the opportunity to repair the carpets.

Under the express language of the policy, Citizens was required to give written notice of its intent to repair property within 30 days.  It did not do that, leading the judges to conclude that by the terms of the contract, it no longer had the right to demand an opportunity to repair.  Furthermore, the personal property rider simply stated that Citizens must pay the scheduled value for the property; the policy did not grant the insurer the right to a new appraisal after damage occurred.  Since the premiums were set by the scheduled value, following the express language of the contract certainly did not work a hardship on the insurer.

Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
309 East Front Street
Traverse City, Michigan 49684
Toll Free: 1-800-678-1307
Fax: 231-929-7262