5th Circuit General Star Win Affirmation: Insurer Did Not Breach Policy in Texas Store Roof Damage Case

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5th Circuit General Star Win Affirmation

An insurer did not breach its policy with the owner of a Texas convenience store by denying coverage for roof damage after a vehicle crashed into the store, the Fifth Circuit affirmed. The court concluded that the owner failed to establish a genuine dispute regarding whether any roof damage was attributable to the crash.

5th Circuit General Star Win Affirmation: Summary Judgment Affirmed

In an unpublished opinion Friday, a three-judge panel upheld a Texas federal court’s summary judgment in favor of General Star Indemnity Co. in a coverage lawsuit brought by Smiley Team II Inc. The panel agreed with the lower court that Smiley’s evidence was insufficient to challenge the insurer’s decision.

Insufficient Evidence from Smiley’s Expert

The affidavit of Smiley’s expert, adjuster Richard Gadrow, “makes conclusory statements and naked assertions that the roof damage was caused by the vehicle collision,” the panel said. “He provides no supporting factual evidence or methodology for how he arrived at the conclusion that the roof damage was caused by the vehicle collision. Such a self-serving affidavit is not sufficient to defeat summary judgment,” the panel added.

5th Circuit General Star Win Affirmation: Incident Background

According to court filings, Smiley’s convenience store in Hitchcock, Texas, sustained damage when a vehicle crashed into the building in September 2017, one month after Hurricane Harvey hit the area. Smiley’s adjuster estimated damages at about $129,000, including over $37,000 for roof repairs.