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Professional Advice

Foro seguro de hogar: Responsabilidad Civil del vecino

Manuel E.

Due to strong winds confirmed by the AEMET and the assessor the awning of my neighbor got broke hitting the roof area of the building. His Home insurance has paid the awning but not the broken tiles as they say that it is not the responsibility of the neighbor. And the insurance from the Community says they do not pay them either because it is not a direct damage caused by wind.

What can we do?

Moderator, Sergio Sanguino

Dear Manuel,

In this case you must go to the particular terms of both the owner of the awning´s Home Insurance Policy and the Insurance Policy of the Community, since it depends on each Insurer the treatment given to each course.

So first, as to the insurance provider of the policy to pay the damages, it would be by the Civil Liability of the awning´s owner. If it is excluded it is because the Insurance Co. interprets that there is no such Civil liability of the neighbor but majeure force, since the awning flies out for unusual strength of the wind, even if well anchored to the wall.

The coverage depends on the firm and what is stated in the Policy (there are companies that do provide coverage for such damages) so we would have to accept what is stated in their terms and conditions.

Notwithstanding the foregoing we confirm that the Civil Liability corresponds to the neighbor (even if the Insurance rejects the claim) from the so called Objective Civil Liability, which means that any owner is responsible for the damage cause by his belongings regardless of the existence of fault or negligence on their part. To claim for this you should sue your neighbor.

As for the second part, which is if the Insurance of the Community should compensate you, we are in the same situation, some Co. include both wind damage caused by wind directly as those caused by objects thrown by that wind. But to our knowledge, if indirect are not expressly excluded, i.e. -caused by objects the wind throws against your belongings- The Insurers should take care of the damage, since there is no doubt that the cause of the damage it was the wind, although the impact comes from the awning (for example, if the wind flies a tile of a higher roof and falls harming another tile that is about 1 meter below the previous, it is no sense to get paid only for the break of the first tile and not the second, as all damage was caused by the wind).

I hope this helps.

Kind regards.

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