Andrea Dearden Dec. 17, 2012, 9:15am

A Belleville insurance agency is being sued by the owner of a Washington Park strip club for allegedly failing to accurately appraise the property.

Showclubs International Inc., doing business as Hollywood Showclub, filed a lawsuit Nov. 9 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Schmale Insurance Agency Inc. and David Haas.

Sometime in 2006 Schmale Insurance was hired by Showclubs International to do an appraisal of the Hollywood Showclub on Bunkum Road, according to the complaint. Schmale allegedly sent Haas, an agent, to the property to conduct the appraisal.

Showclubs International claims Haas inaccurately appraised the building and did not conduct replacement cost surveys, therefore causing the club to be underinsured. The company also claims Haas and the agency failed to advise Hollywood to increase coverage after the initial appraisal.

In April of this year Hollywood says it filed a claim with its insurance provider, Badger Mutual Insurance Company, because of hail damage. However, Badger alleged Hollywood did not meet the co-insurance requirement of the policy and failed to maintain coverage greater than or equal to 80-percent of the replacement value of the property. Hollywood claims Badger depreciated the claim by nearly $50,000 because of the inadequate coverage.

Hollywood accuses Schmale Insurance and its agent, Haas, of negligence, breach of contract and fraud. The club seeks more than $400,000 in damages and costs of the lawsuit.

Hollywood is represented by attorney John L. Gilbert of Edwardsville. They ask for a jury trial.

St. Clair County Circuit Court Case No. 12-L-609

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