41 Fla. L. Weekly D1561a
Insurance — Homeowners — Coverage — Sinkhole claim — Error to enter judgment for damages payable directly to insureds without regard to policy’s loss settlement provision, under which insurer had obligation to pay for repairs only as work was performed under subsurface repair contract
CITIZENS PROPERTY INSURANCE CORPORATION, Appellant, v. JAMES STIEBEN and JESSICA STIEBEN, Appellees. 2nd District. Case No. 2D14-4412. Opinion filed July 6, 2016. Appeal from the Circuit Court for Pasco County; Linda H. Babb, Judge. Counsel: Kara Berard Rockenbach and Lauren J. Smith of Methe & Rockenbach, P.A., West Palm Beach, for Appellant. George A. Vaka and Nancy A. Lauten of Vaka Law Group, Tampa, and Kenneth C. Thomas, Jr., of Marshall Thomas, PL, Tampa, for Appellees.
(SILBERMAN, Judge.) Citizens Property Insurance Corporation seeks review of a final judgment awarding the insureds, James and Jessica Stieben, $233,610.02 in damages for breach of a homeowner’s insurance policy. The cause of action arose after the parties disagreed as to the appropriate method of repairing sinkhole damage. We affirm the final judgment in all respects save for the award of money damages. We reverse to the extent that the trial court entered judgment for damages payable directly to the Stiebens without regard to the policy’s loss settlement provision. See Citizens Prop. Ins. Corp. v. Blaha, 41 Fla. L. Weekly D885, D887 (Fla. 2d DCA Apr. 8, 2016); Citizens Prop. Ins. Corp. v. Amat, 41 Fla. L. Weekly D448, D450 (Fla. 2d DCA Feb. 19, 2016); Tower Hill Select Ins. Co. v. McKee, 151 So. 3d 2, 4 (Fla. 2d DCA 2014), review denied, 163 So. 3d 511 (Fla. 2015). Under this provision, Citizens only has the obligation to pay for repairs as the work is performed under a subsurface repair contract. Blaha, 41 Fla. L. Weekly at D887; Amat, 41 Fla. L. Weekly at D450. Affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded. (WALLACE and BLACK, JJ., Concur.)
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