According to an article first reported by Law 360, Florida restaurant Mama Jo’s is heading to the US Supreme Court, claiming that its insurer wrongly denied coverage for losses stemming from road construction near its location.
As hundreds of businesses face potential conflict with their insurers over business interruption due to COVID-19, the restaurant believes that the Supreme Court will have to issue a federal ruling to settle ongoing trials.
In the petition, the restaurant notes an exclusion for coverage of interior dust, saying this indicates that exterior dust by contrast would be covered under the all-risks policy.
Court documents note that the dispute first took place at the end of 2014 when Mama Jo’s first sought coverage from Sparta for a little over $16,275 to cover cleaning and paint restoration, as well as roughly $292,550 for its estimated loss of sales due to the roadwork.
Sparta initially denied the restaurants claim in January 2017, due to lack of evidence covering direct physical loss or damage to the restaurant.
In June 2018, Chief U.S. District Judge K. Michael Moore’s ruling sided with Sparta, due to the restaurant not showing that it suffered physical loss or damage as defined under Florida law.
In August 2020, the Eleventh Circuit sided with Judge Moore’s decision, ruling that it had no reason to challenge his decision.
Under Florida law, the phrase refers to tangible damage that renders a property “unsatisfactory for future use or requires repairs”, however this wasn’t relevant to Mama Jo’s case, as it was able to clear its premises of the roadwork-related debris.
In its petition Mama Jo challenged the Eleventh Circuit’s decision, claiming it provided unreliable witnesses.
Even though the district court found that their credentials were not in question, it dismissed them as unreliable because they hadn’t done certain kinds of testing, a requirement above and beyond what’s normally needed for expert witnesses, the restaurant said.
The post Florida restaurant bringing BI claim to Supreme Court appeared first on ReinsuranceNe.ws.