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Buachaill
Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 11285
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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During a renovation project, some damage was caused to our

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During a renovation project, some damage was caused to our neighbour's property and personal belongings. Our building contractor has made an insurance claim.What happens if my neighbour is not satisfied with the level of compensation offered by the insurer? Can they accept the offer and try to claim further damages from us or will they need to go through the dispute process of the insurer?

Hello, and thank you for your question. I am your Expert and I will provide the answer you require.

1. Essentially, your neighbour will need to go through the dispute resolution process with your insurer or litigate in court with them if your neighbour is unhappy with the level of compensation offered by your insurer. Essentially, the insurer is subrogated to the claim against you. This essentially means that the insurer 'stands in your shoes' so far as the claim is concerned and the insurer is for all intents and purposes the defendant to the claim against you. This means that the neighbour cannot accept an offer from the insurer and then sue you. Once your neighbour settles or litigates with the insurer, then that is the result of their claim. The are prevented by the law of estoppel from subsequently pursuing you for the same claim or for an element of it which they were not happy with.

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Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thank you and this is the case even though it is my builder's insurer and not my insurer?

3. This is only the case if your builder was at fault for the damage. The builder's insurer will only cover damage which their insured, the builder was responsible for. The builder can only be liable for what he has caused. There is nothing to prevent your neighbour suing you separately, if you were the person responsible for some other damage. Then your own insurance, if you had insurance will apply.

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
My builder accepted responsibility and there was no other damage. I just wanted to check that we were protected (having hired him and given him access to the building), even though we are not the insured person. Thank you.

4. In essence if the builder accepted responsibility for any damage, then any potential loss which you might be faced with will shift onto him. So, you will get an indemnity from the builder for any losses you suffer. Essentially, the builder's insurance will pay out the damage.

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