Sue and Labor Clauses: The Basis for Mitigating, Expediting and Other Policy Provisions

Sue and Labor Clauses: The Basis for Mitigating, Expediting and Other Policy Provisions Adjusters International Disaster Recovery Consulting By Donald S. Malecki, CPCU When buildings, structures or personal property are threatened by physical loss or damage, most insureds will instinctively take immediate action to protect the property. In fact, property policies generally require insureds to take immediate action to protect covered property from loss — or further loss — by moving the property to a safe location temporarily. It is also a person’s common law duty to protect their property from loss. These provisions are found in property and inland marine forms and usually appear in the section having to do with what must be EDI TOR’ S NOTE Besides being a requirement of most insurance policies, taking action to protect threatened property from damage or further damage seems to make sense from everyone’s point of view. Losses are reduced, dollars are saved and devastation is minimized. Yet, however valid and simple the concept might be, coverage for the costs associated with carrying it out is less clear and often debated. In this issue of Adjusting Today, expert Donald Malecki examines policy provisions for mitigating and/ or expediting expenses, especially their root in the historic sue and labor clause. He goes further to present an interesting discussion of how several court cases have interpreted that clause. It is relevant and informative reading. Sheila E. Salvatore Editor

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