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FAQ Page

Some common questions from our clients

There are a number of legal theories that can be brought against culpable parties who cause a fire:




1. Companies and individuals must take steps to make sure they do not trigger a fire. They have a duty to take reasonable steps to make sure their equipment is properly maintained and that potential risks that could trigger a fire are addressed before a fire ever happens. Failing to take these steps may involve things like failing to install proper safety systems or not hiring the proper people. Whether someone’s conduct is negligent often depends on specific facts of what happened leading up to the fire.

2. Under California law, when a defendant triggers a fire that damages property, it is considered a taking of an injured party’s private property or real property. This is called “inverse condemnation.” California law allows people who have suffered this to recover reasonable costs and expenses, including attorneys’ fees.

3. When a defendant triggers a fire that comes onto your property that potentially harms your health or your use of the property, under California law, it can be considered a nuisance. “Nuisance” has a particular meaning in the law and sometimes is compensable.

4. Under California Public Utilities Code § 2106, a public utility can be held responsible if it has triggered the fire. If the utility acted willfully, it can be liable for punitive damages.

5. In addition, fire by its nature is a trespass to your property. A defendant who has triggered a fire that causes damage to your property can be held responsible for the damage to your property based on a trespass violation.

Wildfire victims often assume their losses will be covered under their homeowner’s insurance policy. At Casey Gerry, we have decades of experience in analyzing insurance policies and can help guide you through your policy and your rights. However, that is just the beginning of investigating a fire.

If the fire has been caused by somebody’s mistake, negligence, or recklessness, you may be able to pursue the individual or company causing that fire. Some losses may not be covered by your insurance or may only be partially covered. Often, there may be losses or harms you have suffered that are not covered by your insurance or are inadequately covered. Under those circumstances, you want to make sure that you are protecting your rights against any third-party that may have caused the wildfire. Casey Gerry has three full-time licensed investigators and has often been at the sites of numerous fires to help discover the original cause. If a third-party has triggered the fire that resulted in your harm, you may have remedies against them.

Tragically, wildfire losses can be devastating to your life and your home. You may have lost all or part of your home, your personal belongings, vehicles, as well as the use of your land. You may have trees and plants that are destroyed. Under certain circumstances, you have a right to be compensated for those losses. We have successfully assisted hundreds of families who have suffered enormous losses when they have had their homes destroyed by fires. This type of work is very specialized, and Casey Gerry has extensive experience in representing fire victims. Our goal is to make sure that each loss that you have suffered is properly evaluated and considered.

Personal injuries caused by fires are often severe and sometimes fatal. Common fire injuries can include burns, smoke inhalation, scarring, disfigurement, and permanent disability. Injury victims who sustain permanent disabilities might suffer lost income due to an inability to return to work. The emotional consequences of fire injuries, such a pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of enjoyment of life, can be significant. We have been successful in recovering 7 and 8 figure results for victims of fires.

Personal property loss, real estate loss, trees, vegetation, emotional distress, physical injury, loss of use.

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