Citizens Offers Settlements On 600 Sinkhole Claims

TAMPA – July 30, 2014 – Citizens Property Insurance Corp. has offered to settle sinkhole claims involving about 600 Tampa-area policyholders, the state-backed insurer announced Tuesday.

The settlement offers for clients of the Marshall Thomas Burnett P.L. law firm are intended to end litigation if policyholders agree to repairs on their homes because of sinkhole activity. A release from Citizens noted that more than 100 policyholders have already agreed to the deal.

No estimates were immediately available about how much the settlement could cost Citizens.

The settlement offer will allow homeowners to quickly receive professionally recommended repairs while avoiding millions of dollars in potential litigation expenses, the Citizens release said.

Citizens’ settlement offers to cover the cost of below-ground repairs as recommended by a licensed professional engineer. Policyholders would be allowed to pick from a list of licensed professional engineers to re-evaluate the repairs and to select contractors from another pre-approved list for above-ground repairs caused by the sinkhole repair work. The sinkhole work would come with a five-year warranty from the below-ground stabilization contractor.

The deal comes about two weeks after a similar agreement was worked out between the state-backed insurer and Thompson Trial Group P.A., a Tampa-based law firm working to resolve about 300 sinkhole claims. Citizens has been seeking to resolve about 2,000 sinkhole-related claims, primarily in Pasco, Hernando and Hillsborough counties.

Information and article from – http://www.floridarealtors.org/NewsAndEvents/article.cfm?id=311534

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