Woman sues State Farm to recover underinsured motorist benefits

David Yates Jan. 5, 2012, 9:39am

Alleging she's entitled to recover underinsured motorist benefits, Beaumont resident Leola Mitchell has filed suit against State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. and claims handler Elaine Delapaz.

The suit was filed Dec. 30 in Jefferson County District Court.

According to the lawsuit, on Nov. 20, 2009, Mitchell was involved in an automobile collision when Edwina Dowden allegedly failed to yield the right of way while turning left, slamming into her vehicle.

Following the incident, Mitchell notified her insurance carrier, State Farm, of her claim for underinsured motorist benefits, which was handled by Delapaz.

Allegedly, Delapaz refused to consider some of Mitchell's medical bills and failed to make a reasonable offer to settle her claim.

The plaintiff alleges the defendants breached their contract and violated the Texas Insurance Code.

She is suing for actual damages, medical expenses, mental anguish and attorney's fees.

Beaumont attorney Jonathan Juhan represents her.

Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. A191-591

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