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Mechanic's Shop Caught Fire - HELP!

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A local mechanic had his whole shop burn down. He's a good guy and it really sucks it happened to someone who is as active in the sport.

 

To add insult to injury, a few of my friends had their parts there (one full crf250r engine being rebuilt) and insurance isn't covering the contents of the building.

 

my friends are talking with the shop owners but they are worried they'll be up shits creek with no engine and no insurance funds to source another engine.

 

Anyone have any advice I can pass along? 

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Ya if he didn't have insurance to cover contents, IMO he's personally liable.

Sorry to hear about this cus worst case its not going to work out well for anyone invloved

 

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I smell a lawsuit and an investigation. If he wasn't properly insured, you can sue him for the value of the goods you owned inside the shop as long as you can prove that they were in there and they were yours... which is pretty &%$#@!ing difficult. Other possibility is the stuff is covered and hes keeping the cash. People do messed up stuff for money, especially if they're desperate. 

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Thanks for the insight.

 

I'm not really a ure why they weren't covered. I'm only getting most of the info second hand.. they were/are a legitimate business.

My buddy has said getting the law involved has always been the last resort, but what other choice do they have at this point..  

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11 minutes ago, chronicsmoke said:

Thanks for the insight.

 

I'm not really a ure why they weren't covered. I'm only getting most of the info second hand.. they were/are a legitimate business.

My buddy has said getting the law involved has always been the last resort, but what other choice do they have at this point..  

If hes being told hes out of luck and his stuff isn't being covered, law should be the first thing involved. The more time goes by with out legal action on these types of things, the chance of recooping money for your goods goes down exponentially. Business is business, people can be friendly and trusting but at the end of the day its money and lively hood at stake, not friendship. 

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If you had the vehicle covered/insured, go talk to YOUR insurance company and explain the situation.

Those premiums you pay are for a service the insurance company provides - insurance on loss, and service.  They know insurance and their products, use their knowledge and get what you need for your situation.  If you're not getting the service you expect from them, it's time to shop for another provider.

I could get cheaper premiums for vehicles/homeowners insurance by going with another provider, but when I have a question (or a claim) I go into the local office and the crew there knows what's going on, knows me, and works with me through the process.  They're worth the money.

 

What I'm guessing would happen ... you'd open a claim on your policy, and your insurance agency would follow up with the shop's insurance for the loss.  You'd get a check from your insurance company pretty quick and the insurance co's reimbursement is handled behind the scenes.

 

You're not a customer of the shop's insurance, you're a customer of the shop.  I wouldn't expect a payment from their insurance.

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My guess is they had insurance (maybe) for there private building that turned business which is more expensive and they didnt change it over! 

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17 hours ago, SnowMule said:

If you had the vehicle covered/insured, go talk to YOUR insurance company and explain the situation.

Those premiums you pay are for a service the insurance company provides - insurance on loss, and service.  They know insurance and their products, use their knowledge and get what you need for your situation.  If you're not getting the service you expect from them, it's time to shop for another provider.

I could get cheaper premiums for vehicles/homeowners insurance by going with another provider, but when I have a question (or a claim) I go into the local office and the crew there knows what's going on, knows me, and works with me through the process.  They're worth the money.

 

What I'm guessing would happen ... you'd open a claim on your policy, and your insurance agency would follow up with the shop's insurance for the loss.  You'd get a check from your insurance company pretty quick and the insurance co's reimbursement is handled behind the scenes.

 

You're not a customer of the shop's insurance, you're a customer of the shop.  I wouldn't expect a payment from their insurance.

Excellent point. However, OP is saying that parts were lost not vehicles. IF the motor hes talking about was the stock motor with matching VIN that could still be identified, it might be covered IF he had insurance on the bike. Now if hes having another motor built or the motors got a diff vin than the bike, hes screwed. OPs other friends are screwed, no one insures parts... I doubt you could insure just parts. 

If you don't have something insured or your insurance doesn't cover the loss, the next best thing you can do is go after (in this case) the shops insurance. If they were not properly insured as a business, legal action is really the only option. If it turns out that the shops insurance company will not cover the parts, small claims court is probably the easiest and cheapest way to try and recover the value of the parts. Small claims only goes up to $2500 (at least in CT) and an actual law suit isn't usually worth the cost of a lawyer unless you're suing for 20k+. Any way you slice it, its going to be difficult for OPs friends to prove they had parts there that were lost and what the value of the parts are. The guy with the motor has the best chance but even thats iffy IMO.

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Very good points, thanks guys. I've passed along this thread to the people with parts lost in the incident.

I talked a bit with my buddy who had his engine there and he gave me an update saying the owner is claiming they didn't know they weren't covered for the contents. I don't think he has/had insurance on his bike either...

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4 hours ago, SenorThumpy said:

Excellent point. However, OP is saying that parts were lost not vehicles. IF the motor hes talking about was the stock motor with matching VIN that could still be identified, it might be covered IF he had insurance on the bike. Now if hes having another motor built or the motors got a diff vin than the bike, hes screwed. OPs other friends are screwed, no one insures parts... I doubt you could insure just parts. 

If you don't have something insured or your insurance doesn't cover the loss, the next best thing you can do is go after (in this case) the shops insurance. If they were not properly insured as a business, legal action is really the only option. If it turns out that the shops insurance company will not cover the parts, small claims court is probably the easiest and cheapest way to try and recover the value of the parts. Small claims only goes up to $2500 (at least in CT) and an actual law suit isn't usually worth the cost of a lawyer unless you're suing for 20k+. Any way you slice it, its going to be difficult for OPs friends to prove they had parts there that were lost and what the value of the parts are. The guy with the motor has the best chance but even thats iffy IMO.

It's still a "loss" though.  The engine is a somewhat critical part of the function of the insured item, and that is no longer functional. 

It may not be totalled, but it's still worthy of a claim. 

 

Either way, don't trust a bunch of yahoos on some internet forum.  Go talk to the insurance agent.

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If they were a legit shop they had to be insured. I own two businesses and I am insured to nth degree, because when you're providing a service for someone that insurance protects not only you the owner, but the employees, and the clientele. Something smells fishy to me

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On 4/20/2017 at 1:55 PM, SnowMule said:

It's still a "loss" though.  The engine is a somewhat critical part of the function of the insured item, and that is no longer functional. 

It may not be totalled, but it's still worthy of a claim. 

 

Either way, don't trust a bunch of yahoos on some internet forum.  Go talk to the insurance agent.

I agree. If the vehicle the motor came off of was insured, it should probably be covered and a claim should most definitely be made. I'm just saying that its going to be difficult to prove that it came from the insured vehicle if the VIN is different from the bike or it was a totally diff motor that was being built. Too make matters more difficult, we don't know whats happened to all the stuff that was in the shop. Was it all thrown in a dumpster? Was it thrown in a shipping container? scrapped? Who knows. The insurance company would need to identify the property to pay out a claim. They're not going to just say ohh your bike doesn't have a motor any more and a shop burned down, we trust your motor was actually there and lost in the fire, heres the value of the motor. Ya know

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On 4/20/2017 at 8:14 AM, chronicsmoke said:

Very good points, thanks guys. I've passed along this thread to the people with parts lost in the incident.

I talked a bit with my buddy who had his engine there and he gave me an update saying the owner is claiming they didn't know they weren't covered for the contents. I don't think he has/had insurance on his bike either...

court.

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On 4/20/2017 at 10:14 AM, chronicsmoke said:

Very good points, thanks guys. I've passed along this thread to the people with parts lost in the incident.

I talked a bit with my buddy who had his engine there and he gave me an update saying the owner is claiming they didn't know they weren't covered for the contents. I don't think he has/had insurance on his bike either...

Ugh this is gonna be sloppy, try contacting the businesses insurance agency, if thats a dead end, small claims court

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For them to tell their customers that building contents weren't covered and to recommend they file insurance claims with their own personal insurance is just bad business.

Even if their insurance doesn't cover the contents. They should pay for those parts and engines out of pocket. They were in their possession, and therefore should be their liability.

At a minimum offer to pay a deductible for the bike owners if they have insurance, and all labor should be at no charge.

The more I read about how this shop owner is responding is that they don't care about the customers.

Which makes me believe that maybe the fire was intentional, and that perhaps this was there plan to burn and collect the insurance money and close up shop. Your buddies just happen to be there at the wrong time and place..

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