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The Law & You

A Tree Fell On My House. The Insurance Wants to Repair Than Replace. What to Do?

The Law & You
December 23, 2015

The Law and You

A Tree Fell On My House. The Insurance Wants to Repair Than Replace. What to Do?

A tree damaged a viewer’s house severely. Instead of replacing the damaged items, the insurance is insisting on paying for repairs. The viewer is worried about the repairs. Is there something he can do?

Dave Kuharchik: One again for “The Law & You,” attorneys Greg Fellerman and Ed Ciarimboli. Guys, two days before the big holiday. Do you have my gift purchased yet?

Ed Ciarimboli: *Laughs*

Greg Fellerman: Oh yeah. It’s the same thing last year.

Dave: I liked that gift last year. Let’s get to our question tonight. This one involves a situation with Bill in Pittston. Bill says, “I had a tree fall on my house. It damaged my house very badly. The insurance company wants to pay to repair the things that were damaged rather than replace them with new items. I am worried about repairing these items. What should I do?” Does Bill have a legal case with this?

Ed: Bill, when I tell you you have a lot going on, I am not kidding. First and foremost you need to take a good, long look at your insurance policy and see whether the policy provides for repair or replacement costs. There’s a really important distinction between them. If it doesn’t say either, then you have an argument that it should be a replacement rather than a repair; This is going to be a protracted legal battle. I’m going to let Greg talk about the specifics of what you need to do. Make no mistake about it, you are going down the road to which you are going to have to get into litigation. You’ve really got to make sure you’ve done this correctly.

Greg: Any of these property damage cases, we always talk about it, you’re dealing with an insurance company by yourself, bad idea. You need ti either contact a lawyer that specializes in that or you can call a public adjuster who could come out and help you work on this claim. What a public adjuster is, basically, you hired your own adjuster to help you negotiate and adjust the claim for you and get you the money you deserve. You don’t understand contractual language but they do, they know the value of claims; Those are the things they can help you with. They work on a contiguous basis; You can sometimes negotiate that. They earn their money every single time. You need to pick up the phone and call a lawyer; You need to get your public adjuster involved. You’ll have a much better result.

Ed: Especially with a situation like this where the insurance company is trying to push you into having it repaired rather than replaced. At the end of he day, it’s cheaper for them.

Dave: What is the best way for viewers to reach you for legal advice?

Greg: Give us a call 570-714-HURT or go to our web page at

Ed: Generally speaking we don’t do property damage claims, but we have in the past; We have a number of individuals that we can get you to quickly in order to make sure your rights are protected.

Dave: Results matter with attorneys Greg Fellerman and Ed Ciarimboli. Thanks so much we will see you tomorrow for Christmas Eve.

Ed: Yes can’t wait.

Dave: and “The Law & You” hotline are both open.

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The Law & You is a nightly feature on channels WBRE-TV 28 and WYOU-TV 22 where the attorneys from Fellerman & Ciarimboli answer legal questions. If you have a question that you want answered by the Law & You attorneys, please submit the form on this page or call the hotline at 1-888-570-HURT.

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