March 19, 2024

Kelley Kronenberg Secures Decisive Victory in Hurricane Irma Property Damage Dispute

Kelley Kronenberg Partner, Raul Marrero, secured a decisive victory in a significant legal dispute between our client, an insurance company, and a homeowner seeking coverage for property damage resulting from Hurricane Irma. Presided over by The Honorable Reemberto Diaz in the Circuit Court of Miami-Dade County, Florida, the case centered on a breach of contract claim initiated by the homeowner against his insurer.  

On April 15, 2023, Raul filed a Motion for Summary Judgment, aiming to resolve the matter efficiently without the need for a full trial. The crux of the dispute revolved around the homeowner’s alleged failure to fulfill contractual obligations outlined in his homeowner’s insurance policy, notably concerning the submission of a Sworn Proof of Loss and essential documentation requested by the insurance company. 

Both parties presented their cases on October 26, 2023. Raul argued that the plaintiff hadn’t met his policy obligations by repeatedly failing to provide required documentation, despite the insurer’s diligent requests. 

After careful consideration, the Court ruled in favor of the insurance company. Several key points influenced the decision, emphasizing the importance of adhering to contractual obligations in insurance disputes: 

  • The plaintiff had previously received indemnification for damages from Hurricane Irma from his prior insurer. 
  • The insurer diligently requested necessary documentation and a Sworn Proof of Loss before initiating legal action. 
  • The insurance policy explicitly outlined the insured party’s duties following a loss, including the provision of documents and a Sworn Proof of Loss within a specified timeframe. 
  • During the plaintiff’s deposition, it was confirmed that he had failed to provide requested documentation or a Sworn Proof of Loss. 

The Court concluded that the plaintiff failed to meet the conditions precedent, including submitting a signed, sworn proof of loss, barring his claim and entitling the insurer to final summary judgment. Judge Diaz entered final judgment in favor of our client, denying the plaintiff any relief and granting the insurer permission to proceed without a specified deadline. Additionally, the Court retained jurisdiction over our client’s entitlement to attorney’s fees and costs as per relevant Florida statutes and laws.