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August 2009 Inspector eNews

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August 2009 | Archives

Insurance Matters — The Elevator and the Death of a Child

An analysis by Michael Casey of Casey, O’Malley Associates and Robert Pearson of the Allen Insurance Group

An Inspector performed an inspection on a home that contained an elevator.

In his report under the “Doors/Stairs” section the inspector wrote “Consult contractor regarding remodel/installation of stair and removal of elevator. Elevator appears functioning and satisfactory at time of inspection”.  Under the “Walls” section of the report he wrote “Wall structure not plumb in elevator area, structure appears modified.  Consult contractor regarding repair/remodel/installation of stairs between levels and returning the laundry/bathroom to original layout”.  In both sections he marked “Consult specialist”.

The elevator was made of plywood and did not have doors.  It was installed by the sellers – with no permit.

Allen Insurance "The" Source for Home Inspector Insurance Since 1992

A short time after the buyer (a single parent) moved in, her 8 year old son was pinned between the floor and heating duct work as the elevator was moving. The child died in his mother’s arms after she had freed him.

We are not aware of any standards that require any inspection of an elevator what so ever.  Most standards exclude any requirement to report on any system or component not specifically addressed in the standards.

By mentioning that the elevator was functional at the time of the inspection we lost all ability to defend the claim.  It did not matter that he recommended removal of the elevator – particularly in the case of a child’s death.

The inspector’s insurance company spent $100,000 in defense expenses and finally settled the matter for $140,000.

It is unusual to have an elevator in a home and the following comment could have been used to protect the inspector.  Also in this particular situation the elevator installation had affected the integrity of the structure so a comment was necessary regarding that situation.

“The home has an elevator. Elevators are unique systems and are outside the scope of our standards of practice and it was not inspected. We are not qualified to inspect elevators and recommend you have a qualified specialist contractor inspect the elevator prior to settlement/close of escrow”.

In closing, normally we recommend being silent on systems and components that are not required to be inspected by the standards of practice you reference.   However, when you have a potentially life threatening situation, it is our recommendation you use comments like the preceding to protect yourself and put your client on notice to have the system evaluated – even if they chose to not do so.

Bob Pearson is the Executive Director/Vice President of the Allen Insurance Group. He began his career in home inspections in 1985 and has had three inspection businesses. He has performed thousands of inspections, with an emphasis on commercial properties. In 1992 he was employed by the Allen Insurance Group to create their home inspectors program. He is a member of many inspector associations and is widely recognized as an expert on home inspector insurance.


Click here to learn about OREP Home Inspector E&O Insusrance


Take Your Business to the Next Level! Call TWI Affiliates Training


COA - Casey, O'Malley Associates - The Right Direction


This Issue ...

Affiliate Spotlight - Home Inspection Reporting System

Ethics - Find a Hurt and Be a Solution

Technical Article - Foundation Framing Connections

InspecTest

Off the Net

July 2009 BOD Synopsis (Members Only)

Membership Survey Results Summary (Members Only)

CREIA July 2009 Leadership Day and BOD Meetings Photos

$25 Link Fee

CREIA's Online Calendar

Upcoming CREIA Events
 

New Deck Codes – A Seminar to benefit CCHI

Approved for 4 CECs
When: Tuesday, Aug 11, 2009
Where: 1425 Moonstone, Brea, CA 92821
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 12:00 noon
Description: New Deck Codes
Price: $40 - Includes new Simpson catalogue


New Deck Codes – A Seminar to benefit CCHI

Approved for 4 CECs
When: Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009
Where: 5151 S. Airport Way, Stockton, CA 95206
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 12:00 noon
Description: New Deck Codes
Price: $40 - Includes new Simpson catalogue


Electrical Seminar with Douglas Hansen

Approved for 8 CECs
When: Friday, October 23, 2009
Where: Vina Robles Winery & Hospitality Center
 3700 Mill Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446
 (805) 227-4812
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Price: $159 includes lunch & CodeCheck California handout

Register soon!


QUESTIONS?
Contact:   CREIA Meetings
meetings@creia.org
800/848-7342

 


1 | 2 | 3 | 4 »

Page 1



EVENTS &
EDUCATION

Click here to go to the CREIA Meeting and Events Calendar


Congratulations!

New Candidates

Paula Martin
Lane Aebi
Rick Dehlinger
Stephen Miller
Paul Stream
David Davis
Gary Gramling
Mike Grafton

New CCIs

Brian Dwight


Visit Ask.CREIA.org


 

 
The CREIA Inspector eNewsThe CREIA Inspector eNewsThe CREIA Inspector eNews
August 2009 | Archives

Insurance Matters — The Elevator and the Death of a Child

An analysis by Michael Casey of Casey, O’Malley Associates and Robert Pearson of the Allen Insurance Group

An Inspector performed an inspection on a home that contained an elevator.

In his report under the “Doors/Stairs” section the inspector wrote “Consult contractor regarding remodel/installation of stair and removal of elevator. Elevator appears functioning and satisfactory at time of inspection”.  Under the “Walls” section of the report he wrote “Wall structure not plumb in elevator area, structure appears modified.  Consult contractor regarding repair/remodel/installation of stairs between levels and returning the laundry/bathroom to original layout”.  In both sections he marked “Consult specialist”.

The elevator was made of plywood and did not have doors.  It was installed by the sellers – with no permit.

Allen Insurance "The" Source for Home Inspector Insurance Since 1992

A short time after the buyer (a single parent) moved in, her 8 year old son was pinned between the floor and heating duct work as the elevator was moving. The child died in his mother’s arms after she had freed him.

We are not aware of any standards that require any inspection of an elevator what so ever.  Most standards exclude any requirement to report on any system or component not specifically addressed in the standards.

By mentioning that the elevator was functional at the time of the inspection we lost all ability to defend the claim.  It did not matter that he recommended removal of the elevator – particularly in the case of a child’s death.

The inspector’s insurance company spent $100,000 in defense expenses and finally settled the matter for $140,000.

It is unusual to have an elevator in a home and the following comment could have been used to protect the inspector.  Also in this particular situation the elevator installation had affected the integrity of the structure so a comment was necessary regarding that situation.

“The home has an elevator. Elevators are unique systems and are outside the scope of our standards of practice and it was not inspected. We are not qualified to inspect elevators and recommend you have a qualified specialist contractor inspect the elevator prior to settlement/close of escrow”.

In closing, normally we recommend being silent on systems and components that are not required to be inspected by the standards of practice you reference.   However, when you have a potentially life threatening situation, it is our recommendation you use comments like the preceding to protect yourself and put your client on notice to have the system evaluated – even if they chose to not do so.

Bob Pearson is the Executive Director/Vice President of the Allen Insurance Group. He began his career in home inspections in 1985 and has had three inspection businesses. He has performed thousands of inspections, with an emphasis on commercial properties. In 1992 he was employed by the Allen Insurance Group to create their home inspectors program. He is a member of many inspector associations and is widely recognized as an expert on home inspector insurance.


Click here to learn about OREP Home Inspector E&O Insusrance


Take Your Business to the Next Level! Call TWI Affiliates Training


COA - Casey, O'Malley Associates - The Right Direction


This Issue ...

Affiliate Spotlight - Home Inspection Reporting System

Ethics - Find a Hurt and Be a Solution

Technical Article - Foundation Framing Connections

InspecTest

Off the Net

July 2009 BOD Synopsis (Members Only)

Membership Survey Results Summary (Members Only)

CREIA July 2009 Leadership Day and BOD Meetings Photos

$25 Link Fee

CREIA's Online Calendar

Upcoming CREIA Events
 

New Deck Codes – A Seminar to benefit CCHI

Approved for 4 CECs
When: Tuesday, Aug 11, 2009
Where: 1425 Moonstone, Brea, CA 92821
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 12:00 noon
Description: New Deck Codes
Price: $40 - Includes new Simpson catalogue


New Deck Codes – A Seminar to benefit CCHI

Approved for 4 CECs
When: Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009
Where: 5151 S. Airport Way, Stockton, CA 95206
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 12:00 noon
Description: New Deck Codes
Price: $40 - Includes new Simpson catalogue


Electrical Seminar with Douglas Hansen

Approved for 8 CECs
When: Friday, October 23, 2009
Where: Vina Robles Winery & Hospitality Center
 3700 Mill Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446
 (805) 227-4812
Time: 7:30 am (Check-in) Seminar: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Price: $159 includes lunch & CodeCheck California handout

Register soon!


QUESTIONS?
Contact:   CREIA Meetings
meetings@creia.org
800/848-7342

 


1 | 2 | 3 | 4 »

Page 1



EVENTS &
EDUCATION

Click here to go to the CREIA Meeting and Events Calendar


Congratulations!

New Candidates

Paula Martin
Lane Aebi
Rick Dehlinger
Stephen Miller
Paul Stream
David Davis
Gary Gramling
Mike Grafton

New CCIs

Brian Dwight


Visit Ask.CREIA.org


 

 
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