SAN ANTONIO — An insured has failed to present any evidence showing that his insurer failed to timely investigate his claim for roof damage and, thus, has failed to state a claim for insurance bad faith, a federal judge in Texas ruled May 15 in granting the insurer’s summary judgment motion (Mark Sadovsky v. Nationwide Property and Casualty Insurance Co., No. 18-271, W.D. Texas, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83864).
PIERRE, S.D. — A bad faith claim alleged by insured homeowners seeking a finding that their insurer owes coverage for the costs of complying with an injunction that required them to tear down and rebuild their house must be dismissed because the insureds failed to show that the insurer lacked a reasonable basis for denying coverage, a South Dakota federal judge said May 17 (Joseph Sapienza, et al. v. Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Co., No. 18-3015, D. S.D., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84973).
BOSTON — An insured on May 21 sued its insurer for bad faith in a federal district court, alleging that the insurer has made no payment on almost half of its 228 claims for a total of $39.6 million in damage caused by Hurricane Maria (Capital Crossing Servicing Company LLC v. Mapfre Praico Insurance Company, No. 19-11157, D. Mass.).
FRESNO, Calif. — A California federal judge on May 21 denied summary judgment to an insurer on a widow’s breach of contract and bad faith claims over the death of her husband, which she says was caused by a fall, entitling her to accidental death benefits despite her husband’s history of dementia (Susan Vogt v. Minnesota Life Insurance Company, No. 1:17-cv-01580, E.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 85629).
LOS ANGELES — A trial court properly granted a rental dwelling insurer’s motion for summary judgment because the insureds failed to prove that the insurer breached its contract in denying coverage for water damage to their rental home, the Second District California Court of Appeal said May 22 (Alex Nijmeh, et al. v. State Farm General Insurance Co., No. B282396, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 7, 2019 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 3515).
LAS VEGAS — A Nevada federal judge on May 20 dismissed an insured’s bad faith claim without prejudice after determining that the insured failed to allege sufficient facts in support of her contention that the auto insurer acted in bad faith (Ashley Aiello v. Geico General Insurance Co. et al., No. 19-610, D. Nev., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84191).
NEW CASTLE, Del. — A Delaware judge on May 14 ruled that an insurer did not act in bad faith in denying coverage for an excluded driver under an automobile insurance policy under Delaware law because, under the law, the exclusion was not subject to a 36-month lookback period that would have provided coverage for the driver (Jose Villalobos-Martin, et al. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., No. 18C-01-145, Del. Super., New Castle Co., 2019 Del. Super. LEXIS 237).
PITTSBURGH — A federal judge in Pennsylvania on May 14 ruled that an insured failed to meet her burden of showing that her apartment insurance policy should have provided coverage for additional damages to her property and, thus, summary judgment in favor of the insurer on the insured’s claim for statutory bad faith is warranted (Norene Shiring Keyser v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., No. 18-226, W.D. Pa., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81194).
ANCHORAGE, Alaska — An Alaska federal judge on May 17 denied an auto insurer’s motion for summary judgment on an insured’s bad faith claim after determining that the insured presented evidence to reasonably support her claim that the insurer acted in bad faith in refusing to issue a waiver of its rights to reimbursement for medical costs paid by the insurer on behalf of the insured (Michelle Leibold v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., No. 18-209, D. Alaska, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83869).
NEW YORK — The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on May 16 affirmed a district court’s dismissal of an amended complaint filed by insureds seeking damages as a result of defective concrete used in their home’s foundation because the insureds failed to carry their burden of proving that coverage is afforded under the policy and that the insurer acted in bad faith when it denied their claim (Joseph Mazzarella, et al. v. Amica Mutual Insurance Co., No. 18-1269, 2nd Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 14719).
PITTSBURGH — An insured seeking coverage for pollution costs and damages caused by a gas well that spewed drilling fluid and fracking materials above the surface of the ground claims in a May 15 complaint filed in Pennsylvania state court that its insurers breached their contract and acted in bad faith in denying coverage for the more than $40 million in damages incurred by the insured (CNX Gas Co. LLC v. Lloyd’s of London, et al., No. GD-19-007029, Pa. Comm. Pls., Allegheny Co.).
LOS ANGELES — A disability claimant’s suit seeking benefits under an individual disability income policy and alleging claims for breach of contract and bad faith must be removed to California federal court because the amount in controversy exceeds the federal jurisdictional minimum of $75,000, the insurer maintains in a May 14 notice of removal (Julie Borba, M.D. v. The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 19-4172, C.D. Calif.).
HARRISBURG, Pa. — A Pennsylvania Superior Court panel on May 13 ruled that a state trial court abused its discretion in granting an insurer’s summary judgment motion in an insurance breach of contract and bad faith lawsuit against its insureds because the insurer failed to show that it was prejudiced by the insurers’ numerous delays in litigating the action over the course of 16 years (Benjamin A. Wilson, et al. v. Erie Insurance Group, et al., No. 717 WDA 2018, Pa. Super., 2019 Pa. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 1867).
NEWARK, N.J. — A New Jersey federal judge on May 14 granted an auto insurer’s motion to dismiss a breach of contract claim after determining that the insured and medical providers seeking payment under the auto policy failed to sufficiently and clearly allege a breach of contract (Janine Banks v. Allstate Fire & Casualty Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-17117, D. N.J., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81005).
SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal magistrate judge on May 10 denied a motion to dismiss an insured’s breach of contract and bad faith claims after determining that the insured sufficiently alleged facts to support the claims (Andre Ward v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s of London, et al., No. 18-7551, N.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79664).
OKLAHOMA CITY — An insured’s bad faith claim against an auto insurer must be dismissed because the insured failed to allege sufficient facts in support of her allegation that the insurer acted unreasonably in handling her claim for benefits under her auto policy, an Oklahoma federal judge said May 13 (Tallie McKinney v. Progressive Direct Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-767, W.D. Okla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80538).
LAS VEGAS — An insured’s claims alleging bad faith and unfair claims practices against an auto insurer must be dismissed without prejudice because the insured failed to allege sufficient facts in support of the claims, a Nevada federal judge said May 10 in granting the auto insurer’s motion to dismiss (Melissa Alele v. Geico General Insurance Co., et al., No. 18-1757, D. Nev., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79779).
DES MOINES, Iowa — Under Iowa law, a majority of the state’s high court on May 10 ruled that a common-law cause of action for bad faith failure to pay workers’ compensation benefits is not available against a workers’ compensation insurer’s third-party claims administrator (Samuel De Dios v. Indemnity Insurance Company of North America, et al., No. 18-1227, Iowa Sup., 2019 Iowa Sup. LEXIS 56).
PITTSBURGH — A federal magistrate judge in Pennsylvania on April 17 ruled that an insurer is not entitled to summary judgment on a bad faith claim made by its insured in an automobile insurance dispute because triable issues of material fact exist as to whether the insurer handled the insured’s uninsured motorist (UM) claim in bad faith (Shawn P. Lewis v. Mid-Century Insurance Co., No. 17-1409, W.D. Pa., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 65264).
RIVERSIDE, Calif. — A life insurance policy beneficiary has failed to conclusively establish that insurers and their affiliates’ denial of benefits and rescission of policies were in bad faith, and the defendants have sufficiently shown that because the policies were rescinded, no contract for which the plaintiff is a beneficiary exists and, thus, there is no potential for coverage, a federal judge in California ruled April 25 (Daniel Jang v. Sagicor Life Insurance Co., et al., No. 17-1563, C.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 70319).