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Arguelles v. Citizens Property Insurance Corp.

Florida Court of Appeals, Third District

July 3, 2019

Donato Arguelles, Appellant/Cross-Appellee,
v.
Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, Appellee/Cross-Appellant.

         Not final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.

          An appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, Lower Tribunal No. 16-08414 Peter R. Lopez, Judge.

          Mintz Truppman, P.A., and Timothy H. Crutchfield, for appellant/cross-appellee.

          Cole, Scott & Kissane, P.A., and David C. Borucke (Tampa), for appellee/cross-appellant.

          Before FERNANDEZ, LOGUE, and MILLER, JJ., MILLER, J.

          OPINION

         Appellant, Donato Arguelles, appeals from a final summary judgment entered upon his complaint seeking a declaration of coverage under his homeowner's insurance policy, issued by appellee, Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, for damages sustained in his condominium as the result of a plumbing leak. The trial court determined the terms of the policy required Arguelles to reside in the condominium at the time of loss as a condition of coverage. As Arguelles was living in New York, and his condominium was occupied by two tenants at the time the leak occurred, the trial court granted summary judgment in favor of Citizens. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm.

         FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         In 2013, Citizens issued a homeowner's insurance policy to Arguelles covering his condominium located in Miami, Florida.[1] The policy automatically renewed on an annual basis and provided multiple independent coverages. It set forth the following provisions, with regard to coverage for the dwelling:

         COVERAGE A-Dwelling

         We cover:

1. The alterations, appliances, fixtures and improvements which are part of the building contained within the "residence premises";
2. Items of real property which pertain exclusively to the "residence premises";
3. Property which is your insurance responsibility under a corporation or association of property owners agreement; or
4. Structures owned solely by your, other than the "residence premises," at the location of the "residence ...

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