Adjusters sued by Beaumont couple over hurricane coverage

Kelly Holleran Oct. 27, 2008, 6:34am

A Beaumont couple has filed suit against an insurance company and three claim adjusters, claiming they were not adequately compensated after Hurricane Rita damaged their house.

Willie and Beverly Yarbrough own a home at 4468 El Paso in Beaumont that sustained roof, water, wind and foundation damage during the hurricane on Sept. 24, 2005, according to a complaint filed Oct. 20 in Jefferson County District Court.

The Yarbroughs asked Capitol County Mutual Fire Insurance Company to cover the cost of repairs on their house and requested additional living expenses, the suit states.

The couple alleges Capitol hired three people � Randall Chatagnier, Guadalupe Garza and Sallie Hitchens -- to adjust their claim.

The company denied the Yarbroughs' request for repair coverage, saying it was not covered under their policy, even though it was, according to the complaint.

Capitol and the insurance adjusters also failed to conduct a reasonable investigation, the Yarbroughs claim.

"Specifically, Defendants performed an outcome-oriented investigation of Plaintiffs' claim, which resulted in a biased, unfair and inequitable evaluation of losses on the property," the suit states.

The three insurance adjusters are liable because they made false assertions, according to the complaint.

Capitol is liable because it breached a contract, the suit states.

The Yarbroughs are seeking actual, treble, punitive and exemplary damages, plus attorneys' fees, costs, prejudgment and post-judgment interest and other relief deemed appropriate by the court.

They are represented by Michael R. Ramsey and Gregory F. Cox of The Mostyn Law Firm in Beaumont.

The case has been assigned to Judge Donald Floyd of the 172nd District Court.

Case No. E182-566

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