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  • FIRST POST
    • Aprilfool09
    • By Aprilfool09 3rd Jun 17, 10:45 PM
    • 1Posts
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    Aprilfool09
    Claiming against a neighbours insurer?
    • #1
    • 3rd Jun 17, 10:45 PM
    Claiming against a neighbours insurer? 3rd Jun 17 at 10:45 PM
    Hi,

    My upstairs neighbour left a tap on and has flooded my property. Her insurance company recognise that she has been negligent but are stating that my insurance company would have to make a claim against them. I am not insured as my property is currently unoccupied and when this was explained, her insurance company have stated that they are unable to help.

    Does anyone know if I am able to claim personally against her insurer to trigger a claim?

    Any advice greatly appreciated
Page 1
    • macman
    • By macman 4th Jun 17, 1:42 AM
    • 41,290 Posts
    • 16,954 Thanks
    macman
    • #2
    • 4th Jun 17, 1:42 AM
    • #2
    • 4th Jun 17, 1:42 AM
    Is this a claim on contents or buildings insurance? If it's a flat ,then the latter must be in place, arranged by the freeholder. I assume you mean you have no contents insurance, because it's empty? So what is your claim for?
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • FutureGirl
    • By FutureGirl 4th Jun 17, 11:49 AM
    • 923 Posts
    • 371 Thanks
    FutureGirl
    • #3
    • 4th Jun 17, 11:49 AM
    • #3
    • 4th Jun 17, 11:49 AM
    Usually you claim on your policy (so the damage is dealt with quickly, and mitigates any further damage), and your insurer (if they can PROVE the other party was negligent), will then recover the costs from the other insurer.

    If you aren't insured, you can look to claim against the neighbour directly via small claims, but you will have to prove they were negligent - you'd need to find out the circumstances surrounding how / why they left the tap running / what happened etc.

    If it's a flat in England, the freeholders insurance doesn't cover the internal flats, usually only the communal areas, and the roof etc.
    • Blibble
    • By Blibble 7th Jun 17, 7:44 AM
    • 189 Posts
    • 83 Thanks
    Blibble
    • #4
    • 7th Jun 17, 7:44 AM
    • #4
    • 7th Jun 17, 7:44 AM
    I am not insured
    Originally posted by Aprilfool09
    Well, where does that leave us?

    What damage was done to the property - if this is contents you're stuffed? If it's a buildings claim then you're not insured however if it's rented the management company (or similar) are and would need to file the claim.
    • ThePants999
    • By ThePants999 11th Jun 17, 11:32 AM
    • 792 Posts
    • 894 Thanks
    ThePants999
    • #5
    • 11th Jun 17, 11:32 AM
    • #5
    • 11th Jun 17, 11:32 AM
    Since negligence is involved, can't the OP sue the neighbour, who would then claim on their own insurance?
    • unforeseen
    • By unforeseen 11th Jun 17, 1:13 PM
    • 1,676 Posts
    • 2,117 Thanks
    unforeseen
    • #6
    • 11th Jun 17, 1:13 PM
    • #6
    • 11th Jun 17, 1:13 PM
    I doubt very much that the insurance company stated that their client was negligent. OP needs to prove it.
    Leaving a tap on isn't in itself a negligent act without taking into consideration the factors surrounding the event
    • Blibble
    • By Blibble 11th Jun 17, 3:08 PM
    • 189 Posts
    • 83 Thanks
    Blibble
    • #7
    • 11th Jun 17, 3:08 PM
    • #7
    • 11th Jun 17, 3:08 PM
    Since negligence is involved, can't the OP sue the neighbour, who would then claim on their own insurance?
    Originally posted by ThePants999
    Negligent all comes in to how you define it, and what you can prove. FoS define negligence in a similar way to recklessness (e.g., driving at 100mph in a 30mph if it were a motor claim). Does leaving a tap on count as reckless? Or is it an unforeseen accident, which is careless at worst?
    • FutureGirl
    • By FutureGirl 11th Jun 17, 3:40 PM
    • 923 Posts
    • 371 Thanks
    FutureGirl
    • #8
    • 11th Jun 17, 3:40 PM
    • #8
    • 11th Jun 17, 3:40 PM
    It will depend on the circumstances surrounding them leaving the tap on as to whether the neighbour was negligent. The OP will need to prove this if going to 'sue' the neighbour.

    To prove it you'll need to find out the circumstances from the neighbour (and hope they don't change their story), and look at the common law approach to negligence.

    Also note that the FOS approach is more favourable than common law, and wouldn't apply in this situation as OP isn't complaining to a financial company.
    Last edited by FutureGirl; 11-06-2017 at 3:42 PM.
    • Aretnap
    • By Aretnap 11th Jun 17, 4:50 PM
    • 2,723 Posts
    • 2,164 Thanks
    Aretnap
    • #9
    • 11th Jun 17, 4:50 PM
    • #9
    • 11th Jun 17, 4:50 PM
    Negligent all comes in to how you define it, and what you can prove. FoS define negligence in a similar way to recklessness (e.g., driving at 100mph in a 30mph if it were a motor claim). Does leaving a tap on count as reckless? Or is it an unforeseen accident, which is careless at worst?
    Originally posted by Blibble
    That's the standard the FOS uses to decide whether an insurer can refuse to settle a claim on the grounds that the customer did not take sufficient care of his own property - quite rightly they impose a high barrier. However it has no relevance to the OP's case.

    Legally the OP's claim is against his neighbour under the tort of negligence - and if the neighbour has any liability he can claim for it on his own insurance rather than having to pay the OP' bills himself. To prove the neighbour committed the tort of negligence the OP would have to prove

    (1) that the neighbour had a duty of care to him
    (2) that he failed to take the amount of care that would be expected of a reasonably careful person and
    (3) that the damage to the OP's property was a reasonably foreseeable consequence of that carelessness

    1 and 3 seem satisfied, I don't know whether or not 2 is, but t is certainly a lower standard than recklessness.

    In law third party motor claims are claims for negligence, so if your interpretation was correct you would only be able to claim against a third party if he was doing something as stupid as driving at 100 mph in a built up area. In fact as you know you can claim against another driver for relatively minor and momentary acts of carelessness, such as bumping another car while parking, or pulling out of a junction without looking properly.
    • Blibble
    • By Blibble 11th Jun 17, 8:12 PM
    • 189 Posts
    • 83 Thanks
    Blibble
    That's the standard the FOS uses to decide whether an insurer can refuse to settle a claim on the grounds that the customer did not take sufficient care of his own property - quite rightly they impose a high barrier. However it has no relevance to the OP's case.

    Legally the OP's claim is against his neighbour under the tort of negligence - and if the neighbour has any liability he can claim for it on his own insurance rather than having to pay the OP' bills himself. To prove the neighbour committed the tort of negligence the OP would have to prove

    (1) that the neighbour had a duty of care to him
    (2) that he failed to take the amount of care that would be expected of a reasonably careful person and
    (3) that the damage to the OP's property was a reasonably foreseeable consequence of that carelessness

    1 and 3 seem satisfied, I don't know whether or not 2 is, but t is certainly a lower standard than recklessness.

    In law third party motor claims are claims for negligence, so if your interpretation was correct you would only be able to claim against a third party if he was doing something as stupid as driving at 100 mph in a built up area. In fact as you know you can claim against another driver for relatively minor and momentary acts of carelessness, such as bumping another car while parking, or pulling out of a junction without looking properly.
    Originally posted by Aretnap
    Very true Aretnap & FutureGirl - I stand corrected. Negligent of me to comment without thinking through the circumstances correctly (under your definition of negligent, not mine )
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