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Connecticut Court Holds No Cause Of Action Against Independent Adjuster For Negligence

The states are divided over whether an independent adjuster can be sued for negligence by the insured, and no Connecticut appellate court has ever addressed that issue.  Last Tuesday, however, one of the state’s federal courts predicted that the Connecticut Supreme Court would hold that the adjuster owes no duty to the policyholder in Danielsen v. USAA Cas. Ins. Co., et al., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 158387, 2015 WL 7458513 (Nov. 24, 2015, D. Conn.), and it dismissed the complaint’s negligence count against the adjuster. The insured owned a home in Madison that suffered water damage from a malfunctioning dishwasher, and he brought suit against the carrier and its independent adjuster, alleging that they had underpaid the loss.  The allegations

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Connecticut Holds that When a Lapsed Policy is Reinstated, Coverage is Only Restored Prospectively

In a case of first impression in the Nutmeg State, an intermediate level court in Connecticut recently held that reinstatement of coverage after a lapse for non-payment of premiums does not operate to restore coverage retroactively.  In Brown v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., 150 Conn.App. 405 (May 27, 2014), the court held that coverage is only restored on a prospective basis, and it barred the insured from recovering for a fire loss that took place between the time of the lapse and the reinstatement. The insured, Ralston Brown, owned a home in Bridgeport, and he purchased a homeowner’s insurance policy from State Farm on September 16, 2004.  One year later, the policyholder secured a business policy from the

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Failure to File a Proof of Loss is Fatal, and the Defense Does Not Require a Showing of Prejudice

On June 3, Connecticut’s intermediate level appellate court held that the failure of a policyholder to file a sworn statement in proof of loss was fatal to his claim.  Palkimas v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., 150 Conn.App. 655, 2014 Conn.App. LEXIS 244 (June 3, 2014) rejected the insured’s arguments that prejudice need be shown, holding that while the insurance company may well need to make a showing of prejudice in cases involving the belated submission of a proof, its burden to make such a showing never arises in cases in which the insured has never submitted such a document. Richard Palkimas was insured under a homeowner’s policy issued by State Farm Fire & Casualty Company, and he sustained

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About The Property Insurance Law Observer
For more than four decades, Cozen O’Connor has represented all types of property insurers in jurisdictions throughout the United States, and it is dedicated to keeping its clients abreast of developments that impact the insurance industry. The Property Insurance Law Observer will survey court decisions, enacted or proposed legislation, and regulatory activities from all 50 states. We will also include commentary on current issues and developing trends of interest to first-party insurers.
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