The recent flash floods in Leeds are a prime evidence that flooding is a growing risk for home and business owners. It has been reported that as many as 1,000 businesses have been caught by the floods, which were the worst in the area for 70 years, leaving businesses in various areas, including Kirkstall, now taking steps to rectify the damage and to get their lives, homes and businesses back on track.
Unfortunately not everyone affected by the floods will be covered by insurance policies. Many will find themselves engaging with insurers who refuse to honour policies and some will find themselves with no policy in place at all.
Leeds City Council have put together an advice page for those affected by flooding in Leeds but many will be left struggling to put themselves back in the position they were in before the floods hit.
When purchasing a property, your solicitor can carry out a flood search which can help you assess the risk your property has of flooding in a certain area. Solicitors are not qualified to give advice on flood risk or interpret technical flood reports, however they can inform you whether you are buying a house within a flood plain.
If a solicitor has proceeded to complete a purchase for you without:
- – offering you the option of a flood search; or
- – advising you as to the risks of proceeding without it,
you might be able to bring a claim against that solicitor for professional negligence.
You may have an ongoing claim against an insurer who is refusing to honour a claim or policy. Insurers will often employ loss adjusters who will seek to reduce the liability to the insurer in respect of your claim. In high value claims, it is worth seeking the advice of a solicitor or insurance expert to make sure that your position is not compromised.
Similarly, you might have been given advice about home insurance from a broker. If the policy you were sold did not include flood damage as an insured risk it is likely that a claim for flood damage would not be honoured by the insurer. If you were not warned about the risk of taking out a policy without flood damage or even if you were not told that flooding wasn’t included, you might have a claim in professional negligence against the broker.
The above information can also apply to business owners, many of whom have suffered damage including:
- – damage to premises;
- – stock;
- – the knock-on effect of loss of trade;
- – consequential losses such as additional lease and transport costs.
If you are a business owner and would like to discuss the possibility of a claim against a solicitor or an insurer/broker, do not hesitate to call Levi Solicitors Litigation Department on 0113 2449931 or fill out our online contact form here.