I jury tried a similar case about 10-15 years ago. You must prove homeowner or builder negligence to have a case. If the work was done over eight years ago the builder may be out under the statute of respose. The homowner has a duty to inspect the premises. Was an investigation done after the collapse? What was the cause? Did it occur less than two years ago? Was anyone injured severely?
First, I am assuming the homeowner's insurance denied your claim. If so, their denial letter should state why they are denying the claim.
Second, you should examine the terms of your homeowner's insurance policy to see whether any exclusions apply.
You shold most likely contact an attorney to asisst you in the matter. Insurance companies frequently deny claims even if they are indeed liable because, simply from a cost-benefit analysis, it saves them money in the long run as many individuals do not fight a denial.
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This is classic insurance company behavior. They are saying they are not liable and they are denying coverage in hopes that it will go away. We see this in our practice all the time - Insurance companies do not do the right thing on behalf of injured victims.
It is highly unlikely that a standard homeowners insurance policy would not provide some sort of coverage for this situation. The injured persons need to hire a personal injury attorney to represent them.
There may also be liability on the part of the contractor or company that installed the deck. There is no way to know based on the limited facts provided, but an injury lawyer should investigate this possibility as well.
Our firm represents those who have been injured in accidents such as this and we would be happy to discuss this case with the injured parties. Feel free to call us for a free consultation.
Best of luck to you.
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