Fort McMurray Airport sues insurance provider

Published: June 26, 2018

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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The fallout from Fort McMurray is rumbling on, nearly two years after the town was hit by a wildfire, resulting in the highest insurance loss in Canadian history. In the latest development, the Fort McMurray Airport Authority (FMAA) is suing insurance company FM Global for over $34 million.

Fort McMurray’s municipal airport says the insurer failed in its obligations through a policy from the May 2016 blaze. The claim was filed with the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta in Edmonton a month ago. FMAA says if submitted a proof of loss to FM Global for over $34.2 million in damages from the wildfire. Included in the claim was for lost revenue.

In April 2018, FM Global told the airport that the proof of loss it was provided had been rejected. As a result the insurance company refused to deal with the damages.

“The Fort McMurray Airport Authority is currently in negotiations with its insurance company and we hope to come to a mutually agreeable resolution,” Joanne Meredith, manager of marketing, communications & experience with FMAA, told Canadian Underwriter recently. “We have no further comment at this time.”

In its legal filing, FMAA is pursuing $1 million in aggravated damages and punitive and exemplary damages of $1 million. “FM Global owed the Airports and the Authority a duty of care to ensure that proper and adequate insurance coverage was in place to indemnify the Authority for losses or damages resulting from the wildfire,” the statement of claim says. “FM Global’s refusal to honour its obligations under the policy is a breach of its duty of good faith, for which the plaintiff is entitled to aggravated, punitive and exemplary damages.”