Couple claims agent failed to insure their home

Kelly Holleran May 1, 2012, 3:00am

Two Jefferson County residents have filed suit against the company they claim failed to procure insurance coverage on their property before Hurricane Ike struck in 2008.

Gerardo and Letica Santillan claim defendant Zulema Escobedo and Impact Finance Corp. failed to procure insurance coverage for their property before Sept. 13, 2008. In turn, when Hurricane Ike struck, the Santillans had no insurance on their home, according to the complaint filed April 18 in Jefferson County District Court.

"Plaintiffs were not informed by Defendants that Defendants failed to procure the coverage," the suit states. "Instead, Defendants misled Plaintiffs into entering a settlement agreement and thinking that the settlement was the adjustment of their Hurricane Ike claim."

Despite the settlement, however, the defendants still failed to provide the Santillans with the money promised, the complaint says.

As a result, the Santillans claim they have incurred out-of-pocket costs and experienced mental anguish.

Through their actions, the defendants have violated the Deceptive Trade Practices Act and the Texas Insurance Code, according to the complaint. They have also breached their contract, committed negligence and breached their fiduciary duty, the suit states.

In their complaint, the Santillans are seeking actual, economic and consequential damages, plus damages under the DTPA, pre- and post-judgment interest, attorney's fees, punitive damages, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Rocky Lawdermilk of Beaumont and Eric Paul Edwardson of Beaumont will be representing them.

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

Case No. E192-318

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