Strategies, Challenges, and Answers

Replacement Value Not ACV Is The Proper Measure Of Damages In A Homeowner’s Theft Claim Where Policy Provides For Same

Homeowner's Theft ClaimVictor and Arlene Havas took issue with the way their homeowner’s insurance company, Atlantic Insurance Company valued the property that they lost because of a theft at their home.  Mr. & Mrs. Havas submitted their claim to the insurance company seeking recovery of the value of the lost property.  The Havas’s insurance policy provided that recovery would be limited to an amount not exceeding either the cost of repair or replacement of the property with material of like kind and quality.

Apparently, recovery of the replacement cost was insufficient for the Mr. & Mrs. Havas.  When the insurance company offered them the replacement value of the stolen property (based on documents they produced demonstrating the cost they paid to replace the property) they filed suit.

In the case of Havas v. Atlantic Ins. Co., 95 Nev. 415, 596 P.2d, 246 (1979) they challenged the District Court’s decision awarding them only their replacement costs.  To the Havas’ chagrin, the Nevada Supreme Court agreed that replacement cost was the proper measure of damages under this policy.  As an interesting side note, this claim wasn’t the only beef that Mr. & Mrs. Havas had with Atlantic Insurance Company.  See Havas v. Atlantic Ins. Co., 96 Nev. 586, 614 P.2d 1 (1980) mentioned HERE.  The outcome in that case was even less favorable for Mr. & Mrs. Havas than was this earlier one.

If you have questions regarding the proper measure of damage for an insured property loss, please feel free to contact Mills & Associates.

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