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Topic: What a mess
Message: Posted by: Grandillusionsmagic (Nov 18, 2007 12:25PM)
I am all shook up, the house behind me was vacant, and it burned down, a spark or something from that landed on my shed, and it burned. Most of my props are damaged!!! I can't believe this. Now I don't have everything I need for my shows, and I have to deal with three insurance companies. The former residents insurance is saying that because the house had been sold and was vacant for a while, it is not their responsibility; it is the new owner’s responsibility. Of course the new owners insurance is saying they hadn't moved in yet and weren’t supposed to for two weeks, it is not their responsibility. Then my insurance says they can cover it, I have a $5000 deductible, but if they cover it will affect my policy from then on (increased rates also) I don't know what to do, it could take a while to figure this all out. I have started trying to re-work my show to only use what I have. I don't know what I will do; I might have to cancel shows.

I am sorry for wasting your time, I just needed to VENT.

Jason
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Nov 18, 2007 01:43PM)
You will now know why there are 5,324,087 lawyers.
Message: Posted by: balducci (Nov 18, 2007 02:38PM)
Sorry to hear about your misfortune.

I'm totally not a lawyer, so I'm talking through my hat, but I think the owner of the house at the time is the one whose insurance should be made to pay.

I'm assuming this would be the old owner.

Certainly, one of the two owners must have the responsibility. Or maybe it is a shared responsibility.

I wonder if you can put a lien on the house, against payment of damages owing? That would (I think) hold up the sale and land transfer title, and might encourage one of the parties to settle.

Hopefully a knowledgeable lawyer will chime in ...
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Nov 18, 2007 02:50PM)
Keep track of the losses on shows and potential business, it being the holiday party season an all, and file that against them as well. There are websites where you can post your issue and lawyers will respond. I had a problem and got a response that was accurate and gave me an outline of what I had to do in a couple hours. Unfortunately in my case I was in the one state, California, where the state legislators had been bought off and couldn't win the issue in court...any other state I would have been the victim. Go post now!
Message: Posted by: Josh Chaikin (Nov 18, 2007 04:25PM)
I'm not a lawyer, but I'm majoring in legal studies (not quite pre-law), but I did take a semester of Real Estate law. With that, let me preface that I am, by no means, in a position to give legal advice. That being said, insofar as I can tell, as has already been mentioned, whoever is the current owner of the house, regardless of habitation, is responsible for the damages. If the house is vacant, the previous tenant has obviously moved out, so it's safe to say that ownership has been transferred. Them not living in there at the time is a weak argument from an insurer that's certain they'll have to pay.
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Nov 18, 2007 06:25PM)
Of course the owner is responsible, he just needs to get some weight behind him to get the suckers to pay him.
Message: Posted by: rossmacrae (Nov 18, 2007 06:28PM)
Listen to MagicSanta.

"Weight" = attorney.
Message: Posted by: Rupert Bair (Nov 18, 2007 06:52PM)
I'm carrying some extra attorneys here, but I read in another thread, you'll live longer.

Sorry to hear about your stuff, hopefully you'll get it all sorted.
Message: Posted by: Josh the Superfluous (Nov 18, 2007 07:00PM)
That stinks.

I bet if your house started theirs on fire, someone would claim ownership.
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Nov 18, 2007 07:59PM)
[quote]
On 2007-11-18 13:25, Grandillusionsmagic wrote:
I am sorry for wasting your time, I just needed to VENT.

Jason
[/quote]

I don't consider being there for someone to vent through to be anything close to a "waste!"

I hope you can work things out to some degree!
Message: Posted by: Grandillusionsmagic (Nov 20, 2007 09:44PM)
Thanks for the support, I am sorry to say that I have had to cancel a few shows that I had the end of November. I was able to put togeather a show that I can use for 50% of my December bookings, I am know trying to figure out what I am going to do for the rest. I probably need to take out a loan to get money to buy a couple illusions, then hope I get insurance money.. well I will have to figure something out
as of now I have not been able to get the insurance worked out. today plywood was put up all around the shed and there was chain link put up around house. I don't know who did that, but it is good to see something done.


thanks again for the support, I will keep you updated.


Jason
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Nov 24, 2007 09:45AM)
I think the first thing you'd need to do is find out who put up the plywood and fence and on whose orders they were working. That would give you a working base to decide who's responsible for the house.


Good luck!
Message: Posted by: Slartibartfast (Nov 24, 2007 05:15PM)
And document E V E R Y T H I N G.
Get a notebook and write down notes every single time you speak to anyone.

Every conversation: date, time, who you spoke to, and what they told you. Keep a running log. You may not need it, but nothing beats being able to say "Dan X in claims said on Nov 24th that...." when you are getting the runaround. And trust me - if you are dealing with insurance companies you WILL get the runaround.
Message: Posted by: Steven Steele (Nov 24, 2007 09:42PM)
Jason,

Remember this phrase. "Closing Date". That is the date AND time the title transfers to the new party. If the fire happened before the closing date, the prior owner is responsible. If the fire happened after the closing date, the new owner is responsible. On the closing date, you will have to look at the documents, it will spell it out.

In the meantime, be sure and add the lost revenue you have suffered and ANYTHING else you can directly associate to the fire (e.g. loss of equipment). Then with all of your documentation write a strong letter to whomever is responsible. Give them them 10 days to respond (30 if you feel philanthropic). After that, find a killer attorney and add his costs to the loss.

Good luck with everything,

Steven
Message: Posted by: martini (Nov 24, 2007 10:04PM)
Greetings Jason;
While I can't give legal advice, I may be able to help in another way.
What do you need in props at this time?? If it is anything that I have around here that is not being used, you are welcome to it.

All the Best
Marty
Message: Posted by: Bill (Nov 25, 2007 11:06AM)
[quote]
On 2007-11-20 22:44, Grandillusionsmagic wrote:
Thanks for the support, I am sorry to say that I have had to cancel a few shows that I had the end of November. I was able to put together a show that I can use for 50% of my December bookings, I am know trying to figure out what I am going to do for the rest. I probably need to take out a loan to get money to buy a couple illusions, then hope I get insurance money.. well I will have to figure something out
as of now I have not been able to get the insurance worked out. today plywood was put up all around the shed and there was chain link put up around house. I don't know who did that, but it is good to see something done.


thanks again for the support, I will keep you updated.


Jason
[/quote]

Stop acting like there is nothing you can do. Call a Bank, relative, or whoever for a short term loan. Buy the props you need for your shows and keep track of all your expenses (receipts). If you had to cancel shows, keep a record of that too, you can sue for loss of income.

You need an attorney and fast. Let him handle the details. Chances are petty good that the attorney fees can also be claimed.

Stop walking around in circles wringing your hands, take the initiative, be aggressive, and do what it takes to get you live back.

One word of advice "Insurance companies, in spite of what they say in commercials, are NOT YOUR FRIENDS!" Get an attorney.
Message: Posted by: LobowolfXXX (Nov 25, 2007 11:15AM)
[quote]
On 2007-11-18 14:43, MagicSanta wrote:
You will now know why there are 5,324,087 lawyers.
[/quote]

5,324,088. Don't forget, I just passed the bar!
Message: Posted by: Grandillusionsmagic (Nov 30, 2007 10:20AM)
Thank you for the support. It turns out the fire department put up the fence.
I am sorry to report I lost my first illusion, the meto that I made, Origami, zig-zag, thin model sawing, interlude, fire cage, broom suspension, chair suspension, shadow box, floating table, impossible hank, bow saw sawing. Then I will have to try to "clean up" my linking rings, and 3 in one. I also lost staging, drapes, lights, sound gear, and well you know the other many small things needed for a production.... if anyone is selling any of these let me know I will see what I can do to buy them.

As far as insurance goes, I am still working out all the legal things.....

Thanks
Jason
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Nov 30, 2007 11:21PM)
This is really cheesing me off! You deserve to get this resolved with minimum Bovine-based organic fertilizer!

I was kinda hoping the fence would set up who had responsibility for the property.
Message: Posted by: sparks (Dec 1, 2007 04:12AM)
[quote]
On 2007-11-25 12:06, Bill wrote:

You need an attorney and fast. Let him handle the details. Chances are petty good that the attorney fees can also be claimed.

One word of advice "Insurance companies, in spite of what they say in commercials, are NOT YOUR FRIENDS!" Get an attorney.
[/quote]

Bing and double-bing. That's it in a nutshell. A good attorney should have a field day with this one.
Message: Posted by: Mark Rough (Dec 1, 2007 08:26AM)
It seems to me that you're getting the run around. If the new owners closed on the house, they're responsible whether they moved in or not. If the closing didn't happen, then the old owners are responsible. It's something a lawyer could sort out in about 10 minutes I'm guessing.

Oh, and congratulations, Lobo!

Mark
Message: Posted by: leapinglizards (Dec 1, 2007 08:35AM)
Just an idea- If the items aren't a total loss, maybe you can find a builder willing to buy/ refurbish the items, in exchange for credit toward replacements where applicable.
Message: Posted by: Grandillusionsmagic (Dec 1, 2007 10:37PM)
Thanks for the ideas, I will look at everything again tomorrow, but I think most are damaged so much it would be more work to repair than just cut a new piece. I will be repairing the metal parts, (except the rings, they are really bad) as much as I can and check the integrity of the metal, the last thing I need is to have something go wrong because the metal was _______.

Thanks for the support, I have meetings Monday and Tuesday and hope to get some good news.

Jason
Message: Posted by: johnnymystic (Dec 1, 2007 10:48PM)
This is why you should pack all your props nice and neat in the room in which you sleep,kids go out the windows and props get saved, by life or freakin limb!