Another inspection question

Reply

  #1  
Old 07-02-02, 10:56 AM
G
george703
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Another inspection question

I bought a house a few years ago and have noticed over the years that much of the electric isn't exactly what you would call code (i.e. - I cut into soome drywall and found a splice in the romex in the wall, replacing a fixture, I found the wires in the old one scotch taped together etc...). Anyway, I understand that if you have a fire that results from uninspected work, insurance companies won't pay a claim, but would this apply if it wasn't you who did the work? It seems to me that any electrical fire is going to be the result of shoddy work, either not inspected or negligently inspected. Anyway, I would be ineterested in hearing anyone's toughts. Thanks.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 07-02-02, 12:07 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Although very often repeated, I have never seen actual evidence that insurance companies won't pay for damages caused by unpermitted work. If anyone has personally (not just heard a story about it) had an insurance claim denied because of unpermitted work, I'd like to hear about it.

Anyway, I suggest you call this question into your insurance agent. Then please post back and let us know what he says. We're all curious about that.
 
  #3  
Old 07-02-02, 01:24 PM
S
Member
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Brethren, Mi
Posts: 1,648
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
That is a really good question. Everyone's opinion will be somewhat different and I am not sure I would call my ins agent and tell him you know there is a problem. The ins could then use that against you if there was a fire before you got to repair it. Essentially you knew it was bad but used it anyway. Here ignorance would be a good thing and it would be just an accident that something went wrong,, hence you wouldn't be liable. Somewhat like pulling out on the highway knowing your tires or brakes were bad. There are some legal terms such as "Knowingly" and "admittedly" which would be teamed up with negligence. An inspection is an administrative function. It has no bearing on fault. If you hire someone who is not licensed {state license, hence state enforcement under contract}or evades an inspection then don't expect the court to enforce a judgement against them in case of fault,,, even if he stands right there and burns the place down. Your tough luck for not making sure he was accountable through ins and license. If you do your own work,, inspection or not an ins company couldn't really refuse to pay on the grounds of no inspection,,, they would have to prove you negligent in your workmanship,, and that would be difficult at best.
 
  #4  
Old 07-02-02, 06:31 PM
W
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Sherry, if you are required by law to obtain an electrical permit and you are required by law to obtain an inspection approval and you fail to do as the law requires wouldn't you be liable and neglegent? Remember that ingnorance of the law is not a valid excuse in a judicial action.

John, I have seen insurance company's refuse to pay. Not only refuse to pay, there is legal actions all over the USA where civil cases are being heard as to who is liable in an electrical loss and most of these judicial actions are financed by an insurance company trying to hold a second insurance company etc. liable rather than themselves.

I had a large commercial building that was a city block square in one buildng that caught fire and burnt. I wired that building. The insurance company hired an independant fire investigator to investigate the cause and their liability to pay the claim of insurance on that fire. This investigation went on for 7 years. Every square inch of that building's wiring was investigated for Code violations. Every employee that I had was questioned not once but many times over those years. The phone installer, security company installer, the owners and their employees were questioned over those 7 years. A week before the 7 year limitation was up I was requested a meeting with that private fire investigator. He told me that the cause of the fire was an existing overheated transformer. He also said that no one could find a Code violation they could hold their hat on to hold my company liable. He said that holding my company liable was their main goal because I was the only contractor that worked in that building that had liability insurance. The owners were finally paid by the insurance company for the fire damages 7 years after the fire.

Just another of my stories

Wg
 
  #5  
Old 07-02-02, 07:00 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Wg, thanks for the interesting story. However, the building's owner was going to collect in any case -- it was just a fight between insurance companies as to which one would pay, not over whether the damages were covered. Have you been involved in any similar incidents involving residential property?

I think George can safely discuss this situation with his insurance agent without compromising himself. I hope he does.
 
  #6  
Old 07-02-02, 08:31 PM
S
Member
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Brethren, Mi
Posts: 1,648
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
WG,, thats right. Thats why I talked about evading an inspection in my statement. You are also a licenced contractor and are held to those laws. This is a homeowner doing some things that would be maintainance,,, like repairing a fixture and there would be no required inspection. Very different senario. No commercial liability involved,,, just good concious effort to maintain his personal property.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: