Appraisal: Bonbeck Parker, LLC v. Travelers Indemnity Company of America

The United States District Court for the District of Colorado ruled that an insurer’s refusal to engage in appraisal in order to get a court’s ruling on whether an appraisal proceeding encompassed causation issues constituted a breach of the appraisal clause. Hail damaged the roof of the insured’s commercial property, which the insurer valued at around $50,000. The insured showed proof of loss of over $2 million and demanded appraisal pursuant to the appraisal provision of the policy. The insurer claimed that because many of the damages claimed by the insured were caused by excluded causes of loss under the policy, and refused to enter into appraisal until the court determined if the appraisal’s scope encompassed causation issues. The court ruled this refusal was a breach and found for the insured, although no additional damages outside of the previous appraisal award were granted to the insured.