Mealey's Insurance Bad Faith

  • September 17, 2019

    Rule 37(b) Sanctions Ordered In Bad Faith Suit Over Homeowners Insurance Claim

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Sanctions are warranted against an insured in a breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit brought pursuant to a homeowners insurance dispute because the insured made an intolerable “about-face” in first arguing that he was not seeking additional living expenses and then later stating during discovery that he, in fact, was seeking such damages, a federal judge in California ruled Sept. 13 (Edward Royce Stolz II v. Travelers Commercial Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-1923, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157096).

  • September 17, 2019

    Insurer Removes Reinsurers’ Breach Of Contract Case To New Jersey Federal Court

    TRENTON, N.J. — An insurer on Aug. 27 removed to a New Jersey federal court a breach of contract and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing lawsuit regarding the insurers’ handling of payments for underlying asbestos claims and the indemnification the insurers sought under facultative reinsurance agreements (Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, et al. v. The North River Insurance Co., et al., No. 19-17231, D. N.J.).

  • September 16, 2019

    No Coverage Due For Online Scam; Bad Faith, Breach Of Contract Claims Dismissed

    LAS VEGAS — A Nevada federal judge on Sept. 11 granted an insurer’s motion for summary judgment in favor of an insurer after determining that an insured’s claims for breach of contract, bad faith and unfair claims practices cannot proceed because no coverage is afforded for an online scam perpetrated against the insured (Sanderina LLC, et al. v. Great American Insurance Co., No. 18-772, D. Nev., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154760).

  • September 13, 2019

    Appellate Panel Affirms Summary Judgment Ruling In Bad Faith Dispute

    HARRISBURG, Pa. — A Pennsylvania trial court did not err in granting an insurer’s summary judgment motion in an insurance bad faith lawsuit because it properly held that a life insurance policy was not in effect when its named insured died, a Pennsylvania Superior Court panel ruled Sept. 11 (Alissa O’Hara v. MetLife Insurance Company USA, et al., No. 3477 EDA 2018, Pa. Super., 2019 Pa. Super. LEXIS 3456).

  • September 13, 2019

    Insured’s Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Suit Against Auto Insurer Must Be Remanded

    SEATTLE — An insured’s breach of contract and bad faith suit against an auto insurer must be remanded to state court because it is clear that the amount in controversy does not exceed the federal jurisdictional minimum of $75,000, a Washington federal judge said Sept. 10 (Robyn Brooks v. USAA Casualty Insurance Co., No. 19-5630, W.D. Wash., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154195).

  • September 12, 2019

    Dismissal Of Claims In Bad Faith Suit Over Denial Of Auto Coverage Recommended

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A federal magistrate judge in North Carolina on Sept. 10 recommended that motions to dismiss filed by defendants in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit be granted because the claimants have failed to show that personal jurisdiction exists over two of the defendants and have failed to state a claim for relief against a third (Brigette Kiza, et al. v. Universal Insurance Co., et al., No. 19-136, W.D. N.C., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 153688).

  • September 12, 2019

    Bad Faith Claim Dismissed Without Prejudice; Insureds Allowed To Amend Complaint

    PITTSBURGH — A Pennsylvania federal judge on Sept. 9 dismissed a bad faith claim against an auto insurer after determining that the insureds failed to allege specific facts in support of the claim; however, the judge granted the insureds leave to amend the complaint to assert facts in support of the claim (Jason J. Ream, et al. v. Nationwide Property & Casualty Insurance Co., No. 19-768, W.D. Pa., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152870).

  • September 12, 2019

    Florida Federal Judge Allows Bad Faith Claim In Disability Dispute To Proceed

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Florida federal judge on Sept. 9 determined that a bad faith claim can proceed in a disability and life insurance dispute because the plaintiffs seeking benefits under the policies sufficiently alleged facts to support the bad faith claim (Douglas Kuber v. Berkshire Life Insurance Company of America, No. 19-80211, S.D. Fla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154379). 

  • September 11, 2019

    Panel Affirms Ruling In Insurer’s Favor In Church’s Bad Faith Suit Over Hail Damage

    NEW ORLEANS — The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 10 affirmed a lower federal court's summary judgment ruling in favor of an insurer in a church insured’s lawsuit alleging that the insurer breached the policy and acted in bad faith when it replaced roofing materials with lesser quality materials after the insured's property sustained hail and windstorm damage to its roof (University Baptist Church of Fort Worth v. Lexington Insurance Company, No. 18-11415, 5th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 27307).

  • September 10, 2019

    Insured Asks 9th Circuit To Reverse Dismissal Of UIM Coverage Dispute

    SAN FRANCISCO — An insured recently asked the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a lower federal court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of her automobile insurer, arguing that “justice requires reversal and remand” for a trier of fact to determine questions of fact (Lorene McCall v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, No. 18-16622, 9th Cir.).

  • September 09, 2019

    Delaware Judge Certifies Insured Classes In Bad Faith Suit Against GEICO

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A Delaware Superior Court judge on Aug. 27 granted certification of four claimant classes in an insurance bad faith class action against GEICO General Insurance Co., ruling that the claimants have sufficiently shown that the classes meet all necessary statutory requirements (Yvonne Green, et al. v. GEICO General Insurance Co., No. N17C-03-242, Del. Super., 2019 Del. Super. LEXIS 405).

  • September 09, 2019

    Bad Faith Claim In Specialty Insurance Dispute Survives Dismissal Bid

    INDIANAPOLIS — A federal judge in Indiana on Sept. 4 ruled that dismissal of an insured’s bad faith claim against its specialty insurance provider for losses to its solar energy generation projects in a building fire is not proper because the insured has sufficiently pleaded factual allegations to support the claim (HMV Indy I LLC v. HSB Specialty Insurance Co., No. 19-1148, S.D. Ind., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149969).

  • September 09, 2019

    Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims Cannot Stand Against Long-Term Care Insurer

    RICHMOND, Va. — A Virginia federal judge on Aug. 29 dismissed breach of contract and bad faith claims alleged against a long-term care insurer after determining that the insurer did not breach any of the provision of its policies because it did not fail to disclose information about premium increases (Jerome Skochin, et al. v. Genworth Life Insurance Co., No. 19-49, E.D. Va., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148636).

  • September 06, 2019

    No Coverage Owed For Deterioration Of Basement Walls; Suit Dismissed

    NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A Connecticut federal judge on Sept. 4 dismissed a breach of contract and bad faith suit filed against a homeowners insurer after determining that the policy at issue clearly excludes coverage for the deterioration of the insureds’ foundation walls as a result of the use of defective concrete when the home was built (Marianne Gilmore, et al. v. Teachers Insurance Co., No. 18-1856, D. Conn., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 151006).

  • September 06, 2019

    Trial Court Erred In Dismissing Bad Faith Claim Based On Claim Investigation

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The New Mexico Court of Appeals on Sept. 5 determined that a trial court did not err in finding that an insured is not owed uninsured benefits under an auto policy for an assault that occurred at or near an uninsured vehicle; however, the trial court did err in dismissing the insured’s bad faith claim predicated on the auto insurer’s investigation and evaluation of the claim (Matthew Haygood v. United Services Automobile Association, et al., No. A-1-CA-36158, N.M. App., 2019 N.M. App. LEXIS 112).

  • September 05, 2019

    Insured Offered Sufficient Facts To Support Punitive Damages Claim In Auto Suit

    DENVER — A Colorado federal magistrate judge on Sept. 4 granted an insured’s motion to amend a complaint to add a request for punitive damages in an auto coverage suit because the insured timely filed the motion to amend and the insured offered sufficient facts to support the allegation that the auto insurer’s conduct in denying her claim for underinsured motorist benefits was willful and wanton (Kimberly Argo v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., No. 18-2059, D. Colo., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149966).

  • September 05, 2019

    Wisconsin Judge Says Discovery Cannot Proceed On Bad Faith Claim

    MILWAUKEE — A Wisconsin federal judge on Aug. 30 granted a homeowners insurer’s motion for a protective order precluding an insured from engaging in discovery on a bad faith claim because the insured failed to provide sufficient facts in support of a breach of contract claim as required under Wisconsin law for discovery to proceed on the bad faith claim (Cody Christopherson v. American Strategic Insurance Corp., No. 19-202, E.D. Wis., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148323).

  • September 05, 2019

    Breach Of Contract, Bad Faith Claims To Proceed Against Insurer In Water Damage Suit

    PHOENIX —An Arizona federal judge on Sept. 4 said claims for breach of contract and bad faith in a water damage coverage suit can proceed because issues of fact exist as to whether additional coverage is afforded under a commercial general liability policy and as to whether the insurer reasonably adjusted the insured’s claim for damages (Adams Craig Acquisitions LLC, et al. v. Atain Specialty Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-00817, D. Ariz., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 150227).

  • September 04, 2019

    Claims In Bad Faith Dispute Over Homeowners Insurance Policy Coverage Trimmed

    PHOENIX — A federal judge in Arizona on Aug. 29 ruled that an insured has sufficiently pleaded evidence in support of its claims for insurance bad faith and breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing in a homeowners insurance dispute arising from property damage sustained during policy activity at the insured’s home (James W. Denby v. American Family Insurance, No. 17-2648, D. Ariz., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147421).

  • August 30, 2019

    Claimant’s Bad Faith Claim Survives Dismissal Bid In Auto Insurance Dispute

    OKLAHOMA CITY — An insurer failed to show that its actions in handling a claim for coverage under an automobile insurance policy were reasonable, a federal judge ruled Aug. 28 in denying the insurer’s motion for partial summary judgment (Tracey Daniels, et al. v. CSAA General Insurance Co., No. 18-1115, W.D. Okla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 146422).

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