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Bomb House’ Owner Unlikely To Get Compensation

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Aired 12/10/10

The Escondido house where George Jakubec allegedly stockpiled explosives is now a pile of ashes. Jakubec was renting the home, and the home’s owner is unlikely to be compensated.

— The Escondido house where George Jakubec allegedly stockpiled explosives is now a pile of ashes. Jakubec was renting the home. However, the home’s owner is unlikely to get any compensation for the loss.

Flames engulf the rented home of George Jura Jakubec after it was set ablaze by officials December 9, 2010 in Escondido, California.
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Above: Flames engulf the rented home of George Jura Jakubec after it was set ablaze by officials December 9, 2010 in Escondido, California.

If a government entity decides to build a freeway where your house sits, it can take your home. But, you must be paid for the loss under eminent domain laws. The same rules don’t apply to the home filled with explosives the Sheriff’s department burned down in Escondido, according to Mitchell L. Lathrop.

“Normally when you have police action like this the government is not liable,” said Lathrop, who specializes in insurance issues.

The other most likely source of compensation would be the homeowner’s insurance. But Lathrop said that’s another likely dead end.

“As a general rule, under property insurance there will be exclusions for any damage caused by governmental action.”

Similar homes for sale in the area are listed on Trulia.com for between $250,000 and $300,000

The homeowner’s option of last resort might be to file a claim with the California Victim’s Compensation and Government Claims Board, according to Lathrop. The board hears claims for damages caused by the release of hazardous materials.

Comments

Avatar for user 'jm'

jm | December 10, 2010 at 7:53 a.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

That's a bunch of crap, somebody owes the homeowner money. He or she probably didn't know his or her tenant was stockpiling this stuff. I'd be taking somebody to court, should of had Pre-Paid Legal Services :)

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Avatar for user 'Dandy'

Dandy | December 10, 2010 at 8:06 a.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

The homeowner should immediately sue the tenant to win the right to negotiate, sell and collect the money from the movie rights and the book deals that the bomb maker is going to be offered.

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Avatar for user 'xwagner'

xwagner | December 10, 2010 at 8:34 a.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

This is definitely crap -- how is the home owner supposed to think to take out "psycho bomb-maker tenant" insurance? Pay the guy what his house was worth. It's not his fault. Take the money out of whatever budget keeps paying for those "studies" at $300K per on a new stadium, City Hall, et cetera... pay up since you burned this guy's house down. There ought to be a COMMON SENSE FAIR PLAY clause in the City charter...

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Avatar for user 'rshyer'

rshyer | December 10, 2010 at 11:38 a.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

What wrong with these people down there? Aren't they suppose to know how to deal with the situation without burning the house down? What could possibly could been in that house that a hazardous removal team couldn't have dealt with? The house should have been cleared out and refurbished? If I was the owner I would get the DA to file arson charges and if they wouldn't cooperate, would get a good civil rights lawyer and sue the crap out of the City or County. This matter sets a bad precedent-If you don't like it, burn it down!!!

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Avatar for user 'rmccr51'

rmccr51 | December 10, 2010 at 2:25 p.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

Actually in response to the comment about someone owes the homeowner money-not ture it is the homeowners responsibility for the home and as I do they should have gone to collect their monthy rent and check the premises. It is sad and believe me I would be pissed off - but that is actually the way it is.

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Avatar for user 'dwacpa'

dwacpa | December 10, 2010 at 3:46 p.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

I believe this was declared a disaster area by Schwarzenegger and thus eligible for a low cost loan to rebuild. The owner will also have some income tax relief by claiming a business casualty loss and offset otherwise taxable income.

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Avatar for user 'obmama'

obmama | December 10, 2010 at 5 p.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

I disagree with your opinion that the homeowners insurance will not cover this.

The "Governmental Action" followed a decision that the home was inhabitable because it was contaminated. The direct loss that contributed to setting the house on fire was contamination.

Coverage is under the "Pollution" exclusion, what I like to call an "exclusion to the exclusion". Since the hazardous materials on the premises did not belong to the owner, & were not known to exist by the owner, the "Pollution" exclusion does not apply.

When there is ambiguity in insurance coverage, the decision is in favor of the insured. When there are no previous cases to set a precedent, the decision rests in favor of the insured.

The owner is an innocent victim of the acts of her tenant. My guess is the insurance company will look toward resolving this in the best interest of their customer, who has suffered immense emotional distress. Denying coverage would likely end up in a lawsuit by the mortgagee, with the risk of punitive damages likely, not to mention bad publicity & fines by the Insurance Department.

The fact that the owner has not gone public on this, or attempted to stop the burn, tells me she is being compensated, as she should. That's my opinion.

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Avatar for user 'rshyer'

rshyer | December 16, 2010 at 9:26 a.m. ― 3 years, 10 months ago

mccr51 you must be a liberal. When you rent or lease property you should not have to go the property each and every month and collect the rent-there is a postal system for that. You do not have to check the property every month either. When the property was leased or rented, the tenant took responsibility for giving the property back to the owner in good condition.

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