Disaster insurance agency Earthquake Commission (EQC) has issued a statement clarifying its position on the case of the Goodier family, who are reportedly taking legal action against the insurer.
A report by NZ Herald detailed the case of the Goodier family, who have been battling EQC since the June 2015 storm that flooded Whanganui and caused a landslip at their Bastia Hill property. EQC paid the Goodiers $76,000 for land damage against the family’s professional assessment of remediation costs at $300,000. EQC also paid $38,000 for damage to the house, well below the $115,000 cap. The family is now heading to court for a 10-day hearing of their complaint.
“EQC is empathetic to the situation of the Goodier family, and our preference is to resolve any claim dispute before it goes to court,” EQC said. “Our staff and experts have met with the family on several occasions to discuss their situation, the cover that EQC provides, and the settlement of their claim.”
EQC said it made land payments to the Goodiers for land damage up to the cap limit, as well as payments for building damage.
It also noted its assessment of the landslip at the Goodier’s property determined that while the landslip covered a large area, it had not damaged the house. It also disputed that while the Goodiers disagree with EQC’s assessment, they have not arranged for their own geotechnical engineer to validate their claim for building damage.
“Despite best intentions on both sides, we have not been able to reach an agreement with the Goodier family, or their litigation funder, on what damage to their property is covered by EQC,” EQC added.
The claim is scheduled to go before the court starting on September 17.