Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years experience. Hopefully I can help you with your legal question
Your "sticking point" can mean the difference between the $250 and $800.
Let me give an example.
Lets say this was a car accident
. Say your car had a small ding on the fender already...and the accident causes damage to the same fender in a different location.
And based on the location, it will cost more to fix both dings than the one ding the accident caused.
In that case, you would only be able to sue for the cost to repair the ding that was caused by the accident.
Lets change the facts again.
Say this time it is an accident to the fender...but this time the ding is right on top of the old one. In that case, you would be able to sue for the entire amount.
The same principals of liability will apply here.
If the pre-existing damages will cause the total repair cost to increase then the moving firm has a good argument they are not liable for the entire amount.
But if this is a case where it would cost the same to repair the damage they did regardless of the prior damage? You can sue for the entire amount.
Simple as that.