Groves man sues auto insurer over denial of uninsured motorist claim

Kelly Holleran Jan. 14, 2009, 4:39am

A Groves man has filed suit against Progressive County Mutual Insurance Company and one of its adjusters, alleging he never received the money to which he was entitled after an automobile accident.

Dennis Line was hit on Jan. 16, 2006, after an uninsured motorist, Chad McDonald, ran a stop sign and slammed into Line's vehicle, according to the complaint filed Jan. 9 in Jefferson County District Court.

McDonald was negligent by failing to stop at the stop sign and by failing to keep a lookout, the plaintiff alleges.

Because Line sustained serious injuries and damages in the collision, he made numerous demands to Progressive for full policy limits under the uninsured motorist coverage that was part of his policy, the suit states.

However, Progressive, through its adjuster, Richelle Kevil, refused to pay for some of Line's medical bills and refuses to make a reasonable offer to settle his claim for damages, Line alleges.

Because of the company's refusal to pay, Line has experienced mental anguish, according to the complaint.

Progressive and Kevil breached their contract by refusing to pay uninsured motorists insurance benefits and should be held liable to pay damages, according to the complaint.

They also breached their duty of good faith and fair dealing by denying a payment of benefits without a reasonable basis for their denial, by failing to adopt and implement policies for prompt investigation and settlement of claims that would have prevented a denial, by intentionally disregarding Texas law and by failing to pay any amount to Line, the suit states.

Line is seeking unspecified statutory, actual and punitive damages, plus pre- and post-judgment interest at the highest rate allowed by law, treble damages, attorney's fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Jonathan C. Juhan of Beaumont will be representing him.

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

Case No. D182-998

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