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Caroselli v. Allstate Property and Casualty Insurance Co.

August 16, 2010

WILLIAM CAROSELLI, SR. PLAINTIFF,
v.
ALLSTATE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Schiller, J.

MEMORANDUM

William Caroselli, Sr. sued Allstate Property and Casualty Insurance Company ("Allstate"), on behalf of himself and others, for Allstate's failure to pay full benefits he asserts he is entitled to under his homeowner's policy with Allstate.Allstate contends, in its motion to dismiss presently before the Court, that pursuant to the unambiguous language of Caroselli's insurance policy, it paid to Caroselli all of the money he was owed as a result of his loss. The Court agrees with Allstate and therefore grants its motion to dismiss the Complaint.

I. BACKGROUND

Allstate issued homeowners policy number 9 28 225229 12/30 to William Caroselli, Sr., with a policy period running from December 30, 2008, with no fixed date of expiration. The policy insured Caroselli's property at 407 Beech Street in Boothwyn, Pennsylvania. (Compl. ¶ 12; Def's Mot. to Dismiss Ex. A [Policy] at 1.) Allstate agreed to cover "sudden and accidental direct physical loss to property" described in the dwelling protection section. (Policy at 7.) The Policy limited liability for Caroselli's dwelling to $253,479. (Id. at 2.) The Policy includes an "Important Notice" that states the following:

DWELLING PROFILE

Allstate has determined that the estimated cost to replace your home is: $253,479 The enclosed Policy Declarations shows the limit of liability applicable to Coverage A -- Dwelling Protection of your homeowners insurance policy. The estimated replacement cost of your home is the minimum amount for which we will insure your home.

The decision regarding the limit applicable to your Coverage A --

Dwelling Protection is your decision to make, as long as, at a minimum, your limit equals the estimated replacement cost as determined by Allstate and does not exceed maximum coverage limitations established by Allstate.

It is important to keep in mind that your Coverage A limits reflect a replacement cost that is only an estimate based on data that was available to us when we made this estimate (this data is described further below). The actual amount it will cost to replace your home cannot be known until after a covered total loss has occurred. (Id. at 4.) The Policy explains how Allstate will pay for a loss covered by the dwelling protection provision, as follows:

b) Actual Cash Value. If you do not repair or replace the damaged, destroyed or stolen property, payment will be on an actual cash value basis. This means there may be a deduction for depreciation. Payment will not exceed the Limit Of Liability shown on the Policy Declarations for the coverage that applies to the damaged, destroyed or stolen property, regardless of the number of items involved in the loss. You may make claim for additional payment as described in paragraph c) and paragraph d) below if applicable, if you repair or replace the damaged, destroyed or stolen covered property within 180 days of the actual cash value payment.

c) Building Structure Reimbursement. Under Coverage A -- Dwelling Protection... we will make additional payment to reimburse you for cost in excess of actual cash value if you repair, rebuild or replace damaged, destroyed or stolen covered property within 180 days of the actual cash value payment.

Building Structure Reimbursement will not exceed the smallest of the following amounts:

1) the replacement cost of the part(s) of the building structure(s) for equivalent construction for similar use on the same residence premises;

2) the amount actually and necessarily spent to repair or replace the damaged building structure(s) with equivalent construction for similar use on the same residence premises; or

3) the Limit of Liability applicable to the building structure(s) as shown on the Policy Declarations for Coverage A -- Dwelling... regardless of the number of building structures and structures other than building structures involved in the loss.

(Id. at 17-18.) Caroselli also purchased a Building Structure Reimbursement Extended Limits Endorsement - APC198 which changed certain terms of the Policy. The endorsement altered the Policy provision entitled "How We Pay For A Loss." Specifically, the endorsement ...


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