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April 28, 2021

Two court rulings highlight the delay by insurance companies in paying Hurricane Maria claims.

Two court rulings highlight the delay by insurance companies in paying Hurricane Maria claims.
 
The Court of First Instance in Arecibo ordered Triple-S to issue a partial payment to the co-owners of Condominio Mar Chiquita for the items of damage over which there was no dispute in the plaintiff’s Hurricane Maria claim. After Triple-S argued that payment was not appropriate because there were items of damage that were in dispute, the court ordered the insurer to issue payment in excess of $1 million, since Triple-S had already admitted during the adjustment of the claim that those items were covered under the policy.
 
In another decision, the Court of Appeals reversed a summary judgment entered by the Court of First Instance of Fajardo in a suit against MAPFRE. In this case, the plaintiffs requested from the court an order that MAPFRE issue unconditional payment for the amount it concluded during the adjustment of the claim that it owed to the plaintiffs. MAPFRE opposed the plaintiffs’ request, alleging that, if ordered to issue payment, such should be considered a full and final payment of the whole claim. This would have meant that the plaintiffs would have not been able to recoup any additional policy benefits. The Court of Appeals determined that MAPFRE had an obligation to issue an unconditional payment for the amount that it had already recognized as owed to the plaintiffs and that the payment could not be considered a full and final one.
 
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