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Fire Liability

Having a dispute with a tenant or landlord? Rental Law discussion

Fire Liability

Postby Fulumirani » Tue Dec 13, 2016 5:28 am

I was at a friends apartment and accidentally started a fire.  The fire marshal said I was the cause of the fire.  The fire went beyond my friend's unit and caused $200,000 worth of fire damage to the apartment structure.  The apartment complex's insurance paid for the damage.  I had no renters insurance myself and niether did. The apartment complex's insurance company is about to sue or settle with me. I have nothing of value and make $35,000/yr. Am I liable? If I am liable and I can not pay what will happen?
Fulumirani
 
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Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 7:09 am

Fire Liability

Postby Ramzey » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:24 am

I was at a friends apartment and accidentally started a fire.  The fire marshal said I was the cause of the fire.  The fire went beyond my friend's unit and caused $200,000 worth of fire damage to the apartment structure.  The apartment complex's insurance paid for the damage.  I had no renters insurance myself and niether did. The apartment complex's insurance company is about to sue or settle with me. I have nothing of value and make $35,000/yr. Am I liable? If I am liable and I can not pay what will happen?
Ramzey
 
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Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2014 4:06 am

Fire Liability

Postby Redman » Sat Dec 17, 2016 3:27 pm

If in fact you started and were the cause of the fire, than you could be found to be liable in court.  But until you are adjudicated liable, you are not financially responsible, unless you settle with them and admit your liability.  I strongly recommend that before you sign anything admitting liability or guilt, you consult with an attorney.    

If they sue you, the outcome will depend on whether there is ultimately a judgement against you.  If they get a judgement against you, you are responsbile for paying it, unless you file for bankruptcy.  

If you own an automobile, you might try tendering the claim to the insurance carrier you have for your car.  It is a long shot, but you never know, perhaps they would cover something.  

This is a perfect example of why everyone should have renters insurance.  The benefits are well worth the cost.

Good luck!
Redman
 
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Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2014 3:54 pm


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