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Professional Insights by Margo Brownell Featured in Insurance Journal Article on Inadequate Sublimit Coverage for Property Owners Impacted by the 2020 Minneapolis Riots

September 10, 2020

Margo Brownell, chair of Maslon's Insurance Coverage Group, shares featured commentary in a September 4, 2020, Insurance Journal article titled "Owners Say Insurance Inadequate to Cover Demolition of Riot-Destroyed Buildings." The article discusses how commercial property owners in Minneapolis whose businesses were destroyed by fire during the Minneapolis Riots are discovering that they don't have enough insurance coverage to clear the debris. Noting the Star Tribune's report that "In many cases, the cost of demolition is greater than the value of the property," the Journal suggests that it could "lead to the greatest losses due to civil unrest in history."

In the article, Margo explains that "property owners often don't realize that there are sublimits within their commercial insurance policies." She states "When the limits are low and there's not enough, people don't realize that until there's a problem."

Margo is currently offering pro bono representation to some impacted small businesses. Of those who are running up against the sublimits, she states she is "hoping to work around the problem by citing the law and ordinance provisions in policies, which require insurers to include the cost of complying with current building codes when calculating replacement costs."

To read the full article online, go to: Insurance Journal, "Owners Say Insurance Inadequate to Cover Demolition of Riot-Destroyed Buildings."

Margo Brownell has represented policyholders in litigation, arbitrations, and negotiations with their insurers for over 20 years. She has helped clients recover hundreds of millions of dollars in high-stakes insurance coverage disputes throughout the country.

Recognized as a 2018 Attorney of the Year, Margo has secured coverage for national and international companies facing a wide range of liabilities and losses, including mass tort and product liability (including medical technology and life sciences), directors' and officers' and professional liability, antitrust and securities liabilities, employment practices liability, asbestos and other toxic torts claims, cyber liability, environmental liability and intellectual property liability, and many other types of claims. In addition, Margo litigates property claims, such as those arising from major catastrophic events like the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina as well as claims under financial institution bonds and commercial crime policies. Margo has been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2021 and is recognized on the 2020 Minnesota Super Lawyers® list.

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