Business owner claims insurer didn't fully pay fire claim

Kelly Holleran Sep. 15, 2009, 5:59am

A man who says he incurred more than $100,000 in damages after his business caught fire claims his insurance company is only willing to reimburse him $5,000.

David Fellhauer filed a lawsuit Sept. 1 in Madison County Circuit Court against Country Mutual Insurance Company.

Fellhauer alleges the equipment and repair shop he owns in Hamel called Route 66 Sales and Auto was set on fire on Oct. 4, 2006, which destroyed the building and Fellhauer's personal property inside.

After the fire Fellhauer made a claim to Country Mutual and met with an adjuster, according to the complaint.

"Loss figures in the area of $124,638.22 (Replacement Cost) and $115,208.62 (Actual Cash Value) were submitted to the Defendant and payment requested, at a relatively early date, but no offer has been made to Plaintiff, until recently when a $5,000 offer was tendered," the suit states.

Because he has been unable to reopen his business, Fellhauer suffered a loss of business income in addition to the damage to the building, the complaint says.

In the two-count suit, Fellhauer is seeking a judgment of more than $50,000, plus costs and attorney's fees.

Michael J. Hertz of Lucco, Brown, Threlkeld and Dawson in Edwardsville will be representing him.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-913.

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