Latonya Francis vs. Tower Hill Prime Insurance Company

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Latonya Francis appeals a final summary judgment in favor of her insurer
(Tower Hill Prime Insurance Company, “Tower Hill”), regarding her claims for
rainwater damage to her home’s interior caused by roof leaks. We reverse, finding
that genuine issues of material fact exist regarding Tower Hill’s (1) adjustment and
payment of the “actual cash value” of the damage covered by Ms. Francis’s
insurance policy, and (2) the applicability of the policy’s exclusion for “wear and
tear” to a vague, unliquidated, and inchoate claim for damage to the roof itself.
Tower Hill paid the amount computed by its own appraiser for the interior
repairs, less the applicable policy deductible and depreciation. The insurer notified
her that the allowed amounts were based on “actual cash value,” and that she could
make a claim for depreciation by providing documentation that the repairs were
completed. See Trinidad v. Florida Peninsula Ins. Co., I2I So. 3d 433, 439 n.3
Ms. Francis used the amounts paid by Tower Hill to repair her roof rather
than the damaged interior of the home. Tower Hill advised Ms. Francis that she
could submit supplemental claims for damage revealed as repairs were made.
Ms. Francis sued Tower Hill for breach of the insurance contract based on
an assertion that Tower Hill’s payments were less than the actual cash value of the
damage to the interior. Tower Hill moved for summary judgment, arguing that the
insured was not entitled to further compensation because she had received payment
for the actual cash value of her loss, and because she did not use the insurance
proceeds to repair the reported damage. Tower Hill maintained that Ms. Francis had
not submitted a claim for the roof itself, and that any such claim would have been
disallowed as a result of the exclusion for “wear and tear.”