Our very own Chris Codling was featured on NBC 8’s segment titled “On Your Side.” Codling is representing a homeowner who experienced property damage due to a sink hole. Homeowners found a six-foot deep sinkhole between their houses.
NBC reporter Shannon Behnken investigated the situation and discovered that allegedly State Farm Insurance was aware of the sinkhole activity that occurred underneath the homes. She asked Mr. Codling if the insurance company was aware of the problem. He admitted that they were, stating that the home owner was told “he could fix that [cracks] with plaster paint.”
State Farm Insurance had been alerted about the sinkhole activity in January. They hired an engineer to survey the situation and damages, but did not do anything. When asked if he felt they had done the right thing, Mr. Codling reported, “You see what the end results of their decision was. This could have easily been prevented. They knew this property was experiencing sinkhole conditions.” Because State Farm knew about the cracks earlier, they could have taken preventative measures.
However, Mr. Coddling posits the Florida law change in 2011 as a reason why State Farm may not have acted quickly. The law allows insurance companies to reject sinkhole activity claims if it did not result in structural damage. Mr. Codling is looking into the report. There might be relevant claims that there was structural damage before the sinkhole occurred.
Sinkholes are serious and can cause major damage. It is the responsibility of insurance companies to be aware of these dangers. If your property was damaged by a sinkhole, call Givens Givens Sparks today to discuss your legal rights and options.