Disclaimers, Will They Protect You?

ASHI – NE Chapter Education Chairman, Bob Mulloy, in a recent note wrote:

Joe –

I am preparing a future seminar for ASHI, titled “Disclaimers, Will They Protect You?” 

I have numerous sample disclaimers for systems and components that I plan to present for discussion. 

Let me ask you some questions:

How would you define the difference between an Exclusion and a Disclaimer?


When Attorneys Amend Your Agreement

One of my home inspector clients contacted me the other day for advice on what to do about a prospect whose attorney had lined out in its entirety the portion of his Inspection Agreement that a. required binding arbitration and b. required claims to be brought within one-year of the inspection.

In his transmittal email to the inspector’s prospect, the attorney wrote the following: “The stuff below that I red-lined should be removed. I don’t have a problem for him not to be responsible for stuff he does not inspect. Any questions let me know.” Italics mine.

And I, for my part, do not have a problem with this lawyer lining out those two items, especially if the inspector can exact a higher inspection fee as a result. Here’s why.


Time Is Of The Essence

Recently a home inspector contacted me after receiving notice that his firm was being sued for failing to detect mold in a home that he had inspected several months before. Of course, he was not conducting a mold inspection. And the claimant was not the one for whom he had performed the inspection.

And folks still give me odd looks when I tell them that I never see a legitimate claim!

I asked him if the suit was the first notice that he had had of the claim. It was not. He had received a demand letter from the plaintiff’s attorney a few months before and turned it over to his insurance agent who forwarded to the inspector’s insurer.

A few weeks later he received a letter from the insurance company advising him of its “coverage position”, to wit, since the claim implicated a mold claim and since he did not have coverage for mold, it would not be providing any coverage.