Sun Catchers Tan says rain storm ruined property

Kelly Holleran Jun. 21, 2012, 1:31am

A tanning salon alleges its insurance company refuses to pay it for damages caused to its property during a rain storm.

Sun Catchers Tan claims it sustained substantial damages to its business at 1236 Milton Rd. in Alton on July 18, 2010, when a tarp on top of its roof allowed rain inside.

The tarp had been placed on the roof by a construction company that had begun working to replace the roof during the second week of July, according to the complaint filed June 14 in Madison County Circuit Court. When the rainstorm struck, the roof had not been completed, the suit states.

"Said rainwater caused substantial damage to Plaintiff's businesses and the contents thereof valued in an amount in excess of $606,108.15," the complaint says.

At the time of the storm, Sun Catchers claims it had insurance through defendant CC Services doing business as Country Mutual Insurance Company. However, Sun Catchers's claim for the damages to its business was denied, according to the complaint.

"Country cited a limitation in the policy which precludes a loss 'caused by or resulting from rain...whether driven by wind or not, unless...the building or structure first sustains damage by covered cause of loss to its roof...through which the rain enters...," the suit states. "Country also cited an exclusion in the policy which states that it will not pay a loss 'caused by or resulting from ...faulty, inadequate or defective...workmanship, repair, construction, renovation, remodeling...''

Sun Catchers contends its claim should be covered by Country Mutual because its damages were directly caused by the weather.

Sun Catchers also did not receive any money from the owner of the building, defendant Wilshire Company, even though Wilshire had received money from its insurance company for the loss.

Sun Catchers alleges breach of contract against Country and unjust enrichment against Wilshire.

In its two-count complaint, Sun Catchers is seeking a judgment of more than $50,000 and the money it says Wilshire owes it, plus interest and other relief the court deems just.

Sun Catchers will be represented by Bill T. Walker and Erin M. Doyle of Granite City and by James E. Parrot of St. Louis.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 12-L-840.

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