United States District Court, D. Minnesota
K. Linden, Esq., Smith Jadin Johnson, PLLC, and Timothy D.
Johnson, Esq., Roeder Smith Johnson, PLLC, counsel for
Phillip DeRosier, Esq., Leatha G. Wolter, Esq., and M.
Gregory Simpson, Esq., Meagher and Geer, PLLP, counsel for
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
DONOVAN W. FRANK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Clover Leaf Farm Condominium (“Clover Leaf”), a
common interest community comprised of 13 residential
condominiums, sustained hail damage to its condominiums'
exteriors. Clover Leaf submitted a claim to its insurer,
Defendant Country Mutual Insurance Company
(“Country”), but the parties were unable to agree
upon the amount and scope of the condominiums' repairs.
They elected to resolve the dispute through a binding
appraisal (“Appraisal”). The appraisal panel
issued an award (“Award”), however the parties
dispute the scope of the Award. The Court now considers
Clover Leaf's Motion to Confirm Appraisal Award and for
Partial Summary Judgment (Doc. No. 14 (“Clover Leaf
Motion”), and Country's Motion for Summary Judgment
(Doc. No. 16).
reasons discussed below, the Court grants the Clover Leaf
Motion to the extent it seeks to remand the Award to the
appraisal panel for clarification, and denies Country's
Motion for Summary Judgment.
Leaf consists of 13 residential condominiums (the
“Property”) located in Anoka County, Minnesota.
(Doc. No. 18 (“Clover Leaf Memo.”) at 1.) The
Property was insured under a policy (“Policy”)
issued by Country. (Doc. No. 1, Ex. A (“Compl.”)
¶ 4.) On or about June 11, 2017, the Property was
damaged by a hail storm (the “Loss”).
(Id. ¶ 5.) Clover Leaf notified Country of the
Loss and made a claim for damages on June 12, 2018. (Doc. No.
8 (“Stip.” ¶ 4.) Country investigated the
Loss to create an estimate of the cost to repair the
Property. (Doc. No. 20 (“Country Memo.”) at 4.)
19, 2017, Country issued four actual cash value
(“ACV”) payments to Clover Leaf totaling $370,
728.79. (Doc. No. 25 (“Elliot Decl.”)
¶ 5, Ex. A.) On September 11, 2017, Country
issued three RCV payments totaling $183, 764.02 after roof
repairs were completed. (Id. ¶ 6, Ex. B; Country
Memo. at 4-5.) For the next several months, Clover Leaf and
Country disagreed on the amount and scope of remaining
repairs. (Country Memo. at 5.) Each party relied on
a competing estimate to support its position. (See
Elliot Decl. ¶¶ 8-9, Ex. D (“Country
Estimate”), Ex E. (“Clover Leaf
Estimate”).) The Country Estimate calculated that the
ACV and RCV to restore the Property was $736, 320.99 and
$893, 395.61, respectively. (See Country Estimate.)
The Clover Leaf Estimate calculated that the RCV was $1, 388,
907.86; it did not calculate an ACV. (See Clover
Leaf Estimate.) Both estimates were comprehensive with
respect to the repairs necessary to restore the Property.
(See generally Country Estimate and Clover Leaf
early 2018, Clover Leaf submitted a written demand for
appraisal pursuant to the Policy's appraisal
provision. (Clover Leaf Memo. at 3; Country Memo. at
5.) The provision provides:
If we and you disagree on the amount of loss, either may make
written demand for an appraisal of the loss. In this event,
each party will select a competent and impartial appraiser.
The two appraisers will select an umpire . . . . The
appraisers will state separately the amount of loss. If they
fail to agree, they will submit their differences to the
umpire. A decision agreed to by any two will be binding.
(Policy at 97.) Country and Clover Leaf dispute whether they
reached an agreement with respect to several categories of
damages prior to the appraisal. (Compl. ¶ 11; Elliot
Decl. ¶ 19.) Country contends that it gave its appraiser
the entire Country Estimate without instructions to exclude
certain items because the parties had not agreed to do
(Elliot Decl. ¶ 19.) Clover Leaf argues that the parties
were in agreement with respect to everything except the cost
of siding. (Compl. ¶ 7.)
appraisal occurred on June 15, 2018. (Stip. ¶ 4.) The
appraisal panel issued an Award which provided an ACV amount
of $416, 000 and an RCV amount of $520, 000. (Elliot Decl.
¶ 20, Ex. O (“Award”).) The panel specified
that the award did not include the cost to repair roof
coverings because the work had already been completed and
payment issued. (Id.) Clover Leaf argues that the
Award applies only to siding. (Compl. ¶ 13.) Country
argues that the Award encompasses all aspects of the Loss
except the roof coverings. (Doc. No. 28 (“Country
Opp.”) at 2.) Each party requests the Court to confirm
the Award according to its interpretation. (Compl.
Leaf argues that because siding was the only issue in
dispute, no other issues were appraisable. (Clover Leaf
Memo. at 9) (citing Minn. Stat. § 65A.01, subd. 3, to
support that only disputed amounts go before the appraisal
panel). Clover Leaf contends that Country specifically
acknowledged the limited scope of the dispute. (Clover Leaf
Memo. at 12.) It cites a correspondence dated April 26, 2018
where Country stated, “Country objects to an appraisal
of loss regarding the amount of loss associated with the cost
to repair the buildings' siding . . . Country further
objects to an appraisal of loss regarding the ...