THE DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE
41-261. Failure to comply with order of remedy or removal — Failure to comply with local decision or local appeal decision — Penalty — Civil action to recover penalty. Any owner or occupant failing to comply with such order or local decision, or local appeal decision within thirty (30) days after said appeal to the state fire marshal has been determined, or, if no appeal is taken, then within the time fixed in said order, local decision or local appeal decision shall be liable to a penalty of: ten dollars ($10.00) for each day’s neglect beginning with the first day through the seventh day; fifty dollars ($50.00) per day on the eighth through the thirtieth day; and one hundred dollars ($100) per day on the thirty-first day and each day thereafter. In the event such enforcement action is brought by the office of the state fire marshal, the penalty shall be payable to the state fire marshal, for deposit in the arson, fire and fraud prevention account. In the event such enforcement action is brought by a fire district under the authority of the state fire marshal, the penalty shall then be payable to the fire district which has prosecuted the enforcement action.
The penalty herein provided, if not then paid, may be recovered in an action brought in any court of competent jurisdiction of the county where such property is located, in the name of the state, under the direction of the state fire marshal and/or any of the assistants herein designated, where such property is located, or by an attorney specially designated therefor by the attorney general, or by the attorney for a fire district in the event such enforcement action is brought by the district. The reasonable attorney’s fees and costs incurred in bringing any such enforcement action, if any, shall be awarded to the state or the fire district bringing the enforcement action in addition to the assessment of any penalty, and shall be paid in the same manner as the penalty. If the court determines that the enforcement action has been brought frivolously or without reasonable cause, the court may award to the owner, occupant or party who is the subject of the enforcement action such reasonable attorney’s fees and costs of the defense or appeal of the enforcement action as the court determines is fair and just.
[(41-261) 39-3511 added 1970, ch. 190, sec. 11, p. 547; am. and redesig. 1982, ch. 120, sec. 9, p. 342; am. 2004, ch. 266, sec. 1, p. 748; am. 2008, ch. 402, sec. 6, p. 1108.]