Can I sue my insurance agent for telling me that I was covered for my claim, then denied by the insurance company?

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Can I sue my insurance agent for telling me that I was covered for my claim, then denied by the insurance company?

Now I’m being sued double the amount from the company that did the cleanup. After the agent quoted me a price on day one of half the amount. I live in FL; this happened at a property I have in NY.

Asked on June 20, 2019 under Insurance Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

If you can show that the agent deliberately or knowingly lied to you, you could sue him or her for fraud, for the costs his/her lie caused (e.g. the clean-up cost you incurred on his/her say so). But you have to show a lie (that he or she did know, or reasonably should have known, there was no coverage), since fraud is based on knowing wrongdoing, not on a disagreement over or reasonable error about coverage. If the agent honestly and reasonably believed, such as based on a logical reading of your policy and coverage, that you were covered, he is not liable because the insurer, over whom he has no control, came to a different conclusion. 
If you feel that the terms of your policy do in fact cover for this loss, you don't have to take your insurer's denial as the final word: you could sue the insurer to enforce the policy (based on "breach of contract"), and if court agrees that you are covered, they can be ordered to pay.


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