Collapse - Hidden Decay - Vibration Damage
Thanks to your help we were able to get the insurance money to fix our home back to the way we bought it. I would recommend anyone that suffers and type of damage to their home to get a Public Adjuster especially this firm. Homeowner

Understanding Collapse Caused by Hidden Decay or Vibration

The additional property insurance coverage of collapse caused by hidden decay is one which was seldom encountered until the public adjusters at Tutwiler & Associates pioneered its application to a wide range of hidden damage situations for condominiums, apartments, residential and commercial buildings.  Our firm has experienced tremendous success over the years providing insurance carriers with data that compelled them to cover these Collapse losses, some of which were in the eight figure range. In South Florida for example, where demolition was used to clear land for new developments, we have helped homeowners and businesses settle claims for damage caused to their properties by the vibrations of the blasts.

As a result of these and other successes, insurance companies began restricting the coverage for hidden collapse in very creative ways.  The most important method used by carriers to limit their exposure under additional coverage for collapse was to define collapse in a very specific and limited way. Here is an example of typical language in an actual insurance policy which illustrates this change:

The original language of the insurance policy under the section entitled OTHER COVERAGES states the following:

10. COLLAPSE - We insure for risk of direct physical loss to covered property involving collapse of a building or any part of a building caused only by one or more of the following:

a. Perils Insured Against in this policy;
b. hidden decay;
c. hidden insect or vermin damage;
d. weight of contents, equipment, animals or people;
e. weight of rain which collects on a roof;

use of defective materials or methods in construction, remodeling or renovation if the collapse occurs during the course of the construction, remodeling or renovation....

Now the modified policy language.
Under the endorsement entitled SPECIAL PROVISIONS-FLORIDA, and the OTHER COVERAGES it states:

10. In Forms DP 00 02 and DP 00 03, Collapse is deleted and replaced by the following:

10. Collapse

    a. With respect to this OTHER COVERAGE:

(1) Collapse means an abrupt falling down or caving in of a building or any part of a building with the result that the building, or part of the building, cannot be occupied for its intended purpose.
(2) A building or any part of a building that is not in danger of falling down or caving in is not considered to be in a state of collapse.
(3) A part of a building that is standing is not considered to be in a state of collapse even if it has separated from another part of the building.
(4) A building that is standing or any part of a building that is standing is not considered to be in a state of collapse even if it shows evidence of cracking, bulging, sagging, bending, leaning, settling, shrinkage, or expansion....

As one can see, the building must essentially be in a heap of rubble for it to qualify under the interpretation of the policy definition. If you believe you have a Collapse situation, please feel free to call the public adjusters at Tutwiler & Associates for a no obligation assessment of your property claim situation. 

Roof Collapse from Snow

Roof Collapse from the weight of snow and ice is a common insurance claim areas that experience heavy snowstorms. Snow can build up on a roof and add tremendous amounts of extra weight to the roof. What happens if it proves too much and your roof collapses? If you have homeowners insurance, you should be covered but remember you’ll still have to pay a deductible.

Not all coverage is the same however. With roof collapse due to snow and ice, insurers look at several variables before deciding what to pay. The age of your roof, the condition of your roof at the time of loss, maintenance and even how well your gutters work can impact the claim. So it’s important to keep records. Letting a public adjuster that works for you review all these variables can have an impact on how the claim is presented to your insurance company.  


FAQs About Collapse, Delay, Vibration

Collapse All Expand All
Yes, but that is going to be limited by the definition in your policy. If you have questions, call or contact Tutwiler & Associates at (800) 321-4488 so we can set up a no cost or obligation consultation to explore your potential for insurance recovery or explain an insurance adjusting issue to you, your condominium association or any other business interest. 
Prior to endorsements that limited Collapse to a falling down etc. there was a good chance you might have gotten get paid for the repairs. With the new endorsements being inserted by the property insurance carriers, an actual collapse must occur. You must read your policy or have someone experienced interpreting policy language read the policy in total to get an understanding of what is and is not covered. It is also very important that you read and understand each new endorsement sent to you by your insurance company. If questions arise, call your agent or Tutwiler & Associates with your questions.

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Local Office

Charles R. Tutwiler & Associates Inc., DBA Tutwiler & Associates Public Adjusters
Licensed Public Insurance Adjusters & Loss Consultants
Offices: Tampa, Orlando, Ft. Lauderdale, Palm City, Ft. Myers, 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