Public Authorities Clause

published on January 23, 2019 by Peter

The public view of Property damage policies is that betterment cannot be claimed for and for the most part that is correct but there are instances where there is a form of betterment that is allowed. An example of what is not allowed is, if you have a standard laminate floor that is damaged beyond repair, then you can only claim for a similar standard laminate floor. You cannot claim for a solid hardwood floor as that would be betterment.

However, let’s suppose that the laminate floor was on damaged floor sheeting that was on wet joists above a raised timber floor and there was no insulation between the joists. When replacing the laminate and the floor sheeting and drying and treating the joists are we entitled to claim for insulation as well? – Yes, all repair works must comply with the current building regulations and the policies cover this. Another example is where there is no insulation in the attic space and let’s say the attic tank leaks and damages the top floor ceilings and joists. Again we can claim for new insulation to bring the ceiling repair up to current standards.

If an entire house has to be rebuilt because of a major fire, then the building works must comply with the current building regulations. The cost of supervision by an architect or engineer to certify same is included in the policy. The clauses which describe as an example are

‘the extra cost of meeting current building regulations relating to that damage’

‘we will pay the cost of complying with any Government, Local Authority Building regulation to the extent that these apply to parts of the Premises damaged by an insured clause….

Residential policies are clear that this clause only applies to the damaged areas. Some commercial policies extend to cover undamaged areas. As assessors we have successfully argued in some instances that some heating and electrical systems in residential house cannot operate with only part of the system up to current standards and half not.

In Property Claims Loss assessors ltd we are primarily Engineers and Building surveyors and we keep up with the regulations as well as the property policies.

If you have property damage claim, have it professionally assessed. In Property Claims Loss Assessors Ltd we are Engineers and Building Surveyors with over 20 years’ experience. We assess damage from fire, pipe leaks, storm, flood, subsidence, break-ins, etc. Our first survey is free and we are a ‘no win no fee’ company.

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