GRETNA – A Marrero homeowner who claims his home was damaged in a hailstorm is suing his property insurer claiming it  purposely paid him an insurance deductible lower than what he was owed, resulting in his inability to fully repair the damage and prevent further deterioration.

Clarence Ussin Jr. filed suit against American Security Insurance Company in the 24th Judicial District Court on Feb. 23.

Ussin contends he owns a home located at 2625 Rue Jesann in Marrero that was covered by a property insurance policy provided by American Security Insurance Company when a hailstorm struck the area on Feb. 24, 2013. The plaintiff asserts the deductible provided by the defendant provided coverage for wind damage and that in the storm the home received wind damage to its roof that further caused water to seep into the property and damages its inside structure, its contents as well as the home’s outside.

Ussin claims he provided satisfactory proof of loss after the storm, but that American Security Insurance Company purposely underpriced the cost of repairs to the home and provided him with a damage claim below the cost of repairs and as a result he has been unable to fully repair his home that is still being damaged as a result. In addition, the plaintiff alleges the defendant did not make payment on his claim within 30 days as required under state law.

The defendant is accused of breach of contract, violation of state law, bad faith claims handling, breach of duty of good faith, breach of fair dealing, non-prompt payment and negligent misrepresentation.

Damages in excess of $50,000 are sought for diminution in value of property, repair expenses, remediation expenses, amount due not previously paid, investigative and engineering costs, consequential damages, loss of use, attorney’s fees and litigation costs.

Ussin is represented by Tiffany R. Christian of New Orleans-based Binegar Christian.

The case has been assigned to Division I Judge Nancy A. Miller.

Case no. 747-040.

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