Channel 2 Investigates

Homeowners fight with insurance company to fix hail damage

ATLANTA — On the eve of a Channel 2 Action News investigation, a major insurance company has decided to pay more than 100 storm victims in Gwinnett County.

Homeowners in the Shadowbrook Community in Suwanee were floored when their insurance company denied their claim after a torrential hail storm left behind serious damage.

Other insurance companies paid up without issue to fix roofs just a block away. But one company originally refused to pay.

“Our community put trust into this insurance company and they should pay,” one woman said.

Owners Insurance, a division of Property & Casualty Giant Auto-Owners, denied the claim totaling $840,000.

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During the storm, roofer Mark Johnson said he quickly realized his roof was taking a pounding.

“I’ve never seen a roof this bad that the insurance company has not paid for,” Johnson said.

An engineer hired by the insurance company reported the roofs he inspected “were not bruised, fractured or otherwise damaged by hailstone impact.”

The insurance company brought in a second expert: “No hail-related impact damage.”

Attorney Zach Meeks, who’s also the HOA president, wasn’t happy.

“If ever there was a hail event that was worthy of covering a roof, it would be this one,” Meeks said.

Lola White said it took State Farm seven minutes to decide her roof needed replacement.

Owner Insurance refused to comment on this story and did not respond to a list of questions we emailed them.

However, on Tuesday, they offered to pay.

The attorneys say the fact we were about to air this story was not openly discussed.

The HOA voted and accepted the settlement. It came with a confidentiality clause so we don’t know how much money it is worth.

For the entire report, WATCH Jim Strickland’s video at the top of the page.

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