Policyholder Question on Property Vandalism & Theft

Q. My vacant property was vandalized (electrical, plumbing, bath & kitchen fixtures were destroyed). The insurance company denied my claim for vandalism as they considered theft was involved. Vandalism is a covered peril, theft is not. The definition of vandalism is not absolute (there are five to seven forms of vandalism, depending on the authority) and, there is no definition of theft given in the policy (nor will any representative provide one). One form of vandalism is that of acquisitive vandalism. Clearly when the value of the property damages exceeds 100 times the value of the petty theft, there would be a case for this form of vandalism. In this case the property damage estimate was $25,000 and the estimated value of the scrap wire and used fixtures was $200. Can a claim be successful based on the assertion that, barring a specific exclusion for acquisitive vandalism, the incident was in fact vandalism?

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"On Property" Insurance Claim Tips Blog

Tips and advice about how to properly file and protect your property damage insurance claim and get a fair settlement. We invite all readers to ask questions about their claim so our public adjusters can post answers for others to benefit. Insurance claim expert guest bloggers welcome to submit posts via our contact form.

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Charles R. Tutwiler & Associates Inc.
Licensed Public Insurance Adjusters & Loss Consultants
Offices: Tampa, Orlando, Hollywood, Palm City, Florida; Dallas, TX; Pittsburgh, PA

Executive Office
4300 W. Cypress St.
Suite 780
Tampa, FL 33607
Phone: 813.287.8090
Toll Free: 800.321.4488

Licensed in Florida # W840088 &
Texas #1399706 plus 16 other states
and the Virgin Islands