NZ High Court says deprivation of property is not “damage” in Canterbury earthquake litigation

Today the High Court delivered a result judgment holding that a notice issued pursuant to section 124 of the Building Act 2004, where there was considered to be a direct and continuing threat of further physical damage from certain rockfall hazards which deprived the plaintiffs of the possession of their residential dwelling, constituted neither “natural disaster damage” for the purposes of the Earthquake Commission Act 1993, nor “damage” for the purposes of the relevant insurance policy: Kraal v The Earthquake Commission and Allianz New Zealand Ltd [2014] NZHC 866 (Mallon J).

Mallon J said detailed reasons would be provided later.

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