JOSEPH C. THOMAS, ET AL. V. THE STANDARD FIRE INSURANCE COMPANY, ET AL. - Articles

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Posted by: Amelia Ferrell Knisely on Feb 17, 2016

Head Comment: With D. MICHAEL SWINEY, C.J., concurring.

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Grace E. Daniell, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellants, Joseph C. Thomas and Grace E. Daniell.

Attorneys 2:

Clint J. Woodfin, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellees, The Standard Fire Insurance Company and The Travelers Property Casualty Companies.

Judge(s): MCCLARTY

This appeal arises from an insurance claim for storm-related damage to the property of the plaintiffs. The case was resolved on a motion for summary judgment. According to the plaintiffs, the trial court erred by giving effect to the decision of the appraisal panel because the policy?s appraisal provision is unenforceable. The plaintiffs contend the policy?s appraisal provision constitutes an agreement to arbitrate subject to Tennessee?s version of the Uniform Arbitration Act (Tenn. Code Ann.§ 29-5-301, et seq.). The plaintiffs further argue the appraisal provision does not comply with Tennessee Code Annotated section 29-5-302(a) of the Uniform Arbitration Act, which requires agreements to arbitrate over issues relating to property used as residences must be signed or initialed by the contracting parties. We affirm the trial court?s findings.