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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
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    Default Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    My question involves insurance law for the state of: Arizona


    A fire destroyed a restaurant that I had rented to another business. It was totaled, in addition, to be able to get to the destroyed building, a second building had to be demolished for access. There are significant problems with the claims, can I sue my tenants insurance company directly or do I have to file against my tenants?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    38,646

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Well, you haven’t actually explained why either of them would be liable to you for the damages.

  3. #3
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    Jul 2018
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    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    A fire destroyed a restaurant that I had rented to another business.
    So...you own the building and rented it to a person or entity who operated a restaurant in the building. Correct? What was the cause of the fire?


    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    a second building had to be demolished for access.
    Do you also own this second building?


    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    There are significant problems with the claims
    Such as?


    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    can I sue my tenants insurance company directly or do I have to file against my tenants?
    Anyone can sue anyone for anything, but why would you sue either your tenants (plural?) or their insurer? Why wouldn't you just make a claim against your own property owner's insurance?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
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    7,288

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    There are significant problems with the claims, can I sue my tenants insurance company directly or do I have to file against my tenants?
    Their insurance company didn't cause your loss. In addition that, their insurance company has no obligation to you. Its contract is with its insured — the tenants. So absent something unusual that you failed to mention you'd not succeed in suing the tenant's insurance company. If you have reason to believe that the fire was caused by the negligence or intentional act of your tenants then you may sue them for your loss. But you should have had adequate insurance to cover this, in which case the far easier and less expensive course of action here is to make the claim with your insurance company.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    16,951

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting creeker000
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    There are significant problems with the claims,
    Did you have your own insurance on your building or were you relying on your tenants to cover it?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
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    6,283

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Don't most commercial insurance policies have a subrogation clause? Property owner's insurance company pays the claim and then recovers from the tenant's insurer and/or the tenants.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2013
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    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting budwad
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    Don't most commercial insurance policies have a subrogation clause?
    Yes.

    Quote Quoting budwad
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    Property owner's insurance company pays the claim and then recovers from the tenant's insurer and/or the tenants.
    When the tenant's negligence caused the fire.

    If the tenant was not negligent, then the owner's insurance company does not recover from the tenant's insurance.

    Creeker000 wrote that there were significant problems with the claims but has not come back to explain.

  8. #8
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    Jul 2018
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    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting Taxing Matters
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    In addition that, their insurance company has no obligation to you. Its contract is with its insured — the tenants. So absent something unusual that you failed to mention you'd not succeed in suing the tenant's insurance company.
    In a commercial landlord-tenant situation, it is entirely possible (and not at all unusual) that the lease requires the tenant to have the landlord named as an additional insured on the tenant's insurance. That would allow the landlord to make a first-party claim against the insurance, although that doesn't mean the landlord would have a valid basis to sue.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
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    7,288

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting pg1067
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    In a commercial landlord-tenant situation, it is entirely possible (and not at all unusual) that the lease requires the tenant to have the landlord named as an additional insured on the tenant's insurance. That would allow the landlord to make a first-party claim against the insurance, although that doesn't mean the landlord would have a valid basis to sue.
    Quite true, but then as you imply the most straightforward way to go in that case is to simply make the direct claim with the insurance company. It would be helpful if the OP clarified a few things, and whether he was a named insured on the tenant's policy is one of them.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    16,951

    Default Re: Fire Takes Out Tenants Building, Can I Sue Their Innsurance Company Directly

    Quote Quoting Taxing Matters
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    It would be helpful if the OP clarified a few things,
    Like why there are "significant problems" with the claims (plural?), among other things.

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