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The Villages
Saturday, December 9, 2023

Villagers sue AAA insurance for Hurricane Ian damage payments

A Village of Hadley couple has filed a lawsuit against the insurance arm of the American Automobile Association (AAA), accusing the company of not paying for “physical damage” that their home sustained last year during Hurricane Ian.

Robert and Barbara Mehl, who live at 2372 Unity Terrace in the Village of Hadley, filed the lawsuit against Auto Club Insurance Company of Florida (ACICF) on Aug. 7 in the circuit court for the fifth judicial circuit of Sumter County.

2372 Unity Terrace in the Village of Hadley
2372 Unity Terrace in the Village of Hadley

In the lawsuit, the Mehls claim that on Sept. 28, 2022, while Hurricane Ian was passing through The Villages, their home “sustained direct physical damage” as the result of wind and water opening their “roofing system.”

The couple’s attorney, Philip Rhodes of Coral Gables-based Morgan Law Group, says his clients made “necessary repairs and replacements” and gave “timely notice” to the insurance provider.

The Mehls say that ACICF assigned a claim number and the company was “given access and the opportunity to inspect the Insured Property and the reported damage arising from the loss.”

The couple claims ACICF has “failed to establish” that it is not “responsible for the payment” of damages, according to the complaint.

“This is an action relating to [ACICF’s] breach of Contract for its failure to properly pay the full amount of insurance proceeds owed to [the Mehls],” reads the complaint.

The filing calls for damages “in excess of $50,000, exclusive of attorney fees, costs, and interest.”

Although the Mehls and their attorney have filed multiple requests for interrogatories and a summons to ACICF, no filings have been documented on behalf of the insurance provider as of Sept. 10.

In September 2022, Hurricane Ian brought historic flooding and property damage to various parts of Florida, including The Villages.

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