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FIRE INSURANCE DECISIONS
THE COURTS OF THE UNITED STATES, GREAT BRITAIN AND CANADA,
FROM THE EARLIEST PERIOD TO THE PRESENT TIME,
WITH REFERENCES TO STATUTORY PROVISIONS,
THE NEW YORK STANDARD FORM OF FIRE INSURANCE CONTRACT
ANNOTATED, AND OTHER STANDARD FORMS,
ALL CLASSIFIED AND ARRANGED AS TO SUBJECT MATTER ACCORDING TO
EXISTING TERMS AND CONDITIONS.
BY GEORGE A. CLEMENT,
OF THE NEW YORK BAR.
Since the adoption of the New York Standard Form of Fire Insurance contract, now in general use throughout the United States, with the exception of Massachusetts and New Hampshire, it has been a common mistake to assume that all cases decided prior to that time became inapplicable or obsolete. Later decisions have exposed this error, and emphasized the importance and necessity of knowing old principles as being possibly applied by the courts to new phraseology and facts. A work giving only later or selected cases may not only be incomplete but misleading.
While an occasional Life or Marine case is cited, this book is designed to be exclusively devoted to Fire Insurance law. It consists of very nearly seven thousand abstracts or notes, and covers the ground in the United States, Great Britain and Canada from the earliest cases to those decided and published to about the termination of the last summer vacation of the courts. The New York Standard Form, being in general use, is taken as the basis of analysis and classification. It is divided into twenty-four sections, each being separated as to subject matter, and the cases cited under appropriate headings, the arrangement being new, original and practical. The Standard Form being only the foundation as to topics, and both old and new cases cited thereunder, it is apparent that the book is of equal value in all States and countries, whether a standard form is used or not.
In the Table of Contents will be found a skeleton or analysis of the entire book, with the original numbers of the lines of the Standard Form indicated, with reference to the pages where such lines and the cases may be found. The other standard forms are printed at length in the Appendix. The cases are usually, though not invariably, cited in chronological order, the later ones subsequent to 1887 being indicated by a star or asterisk, although this does not necessarily mean that in every instance the decision was. on the Standard Form. The use of italics to indicate new provisions is intended only as an approximate guide, and not as an exact statement. Some of the phrases may have been in prior use in occasional or exceptional instances, and the expression in the note to the first section, “new or comparatively new,' is about as accurate as possible to make it. With the Table of Contents, Cross References and Index, which is exceptionally full, it is hoped there will be no difficulty in practical and satisfactory use of the book. As it is not attempted to follow the alphabet in arrangement of subject matter, topics not suggested by language of the Standard Form, together with miscellaneous decisions are placed under Section One. Manifestly some were properly put there, such as parol contract, consummation of contract, insurable interest, etc., and to put the others elsewhere would be to sacrifice uniformity without adding to strength of arrangement. When the