Ike victim sues Allstate for misrepresenting homeowner's policy in place

Kelly Holleran Jan. 14, 2009, 3:13am

The executor of a deceased woman's estate has filed suit against Allstate Texas Lloyd's and one of its agents, alleging the agent and the company assured him there was insurance on a property when there was none.

The suit was filed John Clayton, as executor and on behalf of Inez Clayton, on Jan. 9 in Jefferson County District Court. Clayton alleges he paid for a flood insurance policy from Allstate that included windstorm, hurricane and hail coverage for property located at 6640 Ninth Ave. in Port Arthur.

According to the original complaint, he was told the policy would be in effect from May 10, 2008, through May 10, 2009.

After Hurricane Ike struck and caused extensive damage to Clayton's home, Clayton made a claim for damages to his property, the suit states.

However, he claims Allstate denied his claims because it had failed to secure the necessary windstorm, hurricane and hail coverage on Clayton's home.

"It was not until after Plaintiff made a claim for damages that Defendants informed Plaintiff that they had failed to secure or were denying said insurance coverage existed," the suit states.

Clayton claims he does not have the money to repair his home and that substantial delays in repairs have caused additional damage to the house.

He has also endured severe mental anguish, incurred out-of pocket expenses, a loss of use of his house, cost of replacement and costs of repairs, according to the complaint.

Allstate and its agent, Frank J. Pritchard, engaged in false, misleading and deceptive acts by misrepresenting the policy to Clayton, according to the complaint.

They also breached a contract to procure windstorm, hurricane, hail and flood coverage by failing to provide the services, the suit states.

Clayton claims Allstate and Pritchard were negligent by failing to obtain the coverage, by failing to notify Clayton he did not have the coverage and by allowing Clayton to believe he had the coverage when he did not.

Clayton is seeking an unspecified judgment, plus interest at the legal rate, costs and other relief to which he may be entitled.

He is represented by Scott Renick and John D. West of Beaumont.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Case No. D182-990

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