ROGERSVILLE INVESTMENT CORPORATION d/b/a HOLIDAY INN EXPRESS v. MERIDIAN INSURANCE GROUP, INC. (Tenn.Ct.App. September 4, 2007)
In this case involving an insurance claim for property damage when a nearly-completed Holiday Inn building in Rogersville partially burned, the issue is how much money the insurance company must pay under the contract. The insurance contract provided that the insurer would pay the insured "the cost to repair, replace or rebuild the property with material of like kind and quality." The insured submitted proof that the contractor's bill for the covered repairs was $47,982.92. Over the insured's hearsay objection, the insurance company introduced evidence that its third-party investigator, who inspected the damaged property, prepared an estimate approximating the loss at $20,532.94. The trial court rejected the insurer's defense of accord and satisfaction, and awarded the insured $33,757.93. We affirm the trial court's judgment that the insurer did not prove accord and satisfaction, and hold that under the unambiguous terms of the contract, the insurer is required to pay the insured $46,982.92, in the absence of proof that the amount charged by the contractor for repairs is excessive or unreasonable. We therefore affirm the judgment of the trial court as modified.
Opinion may be found at: