Local man seeks funds from Allstate over Hurricane Rita claim

By Kelly Holleran | Mar 4, 2009

A Jefferson County man has filed suit against Allstate Texas Lloyd's, alleging he was not paid money to which he was entitled after Hurricane Rita destroyed sections of his home.

When Delbert Self's property at 257 Rosine in Beaumont sustained dwelling and contents damages on Sept. 24, 2005, during Hurricane Rita, he submitted a claim to Allstate, which had insured his property, according to the complaint filed Feb. 24 in Jefferson County District Court.

Self requested Allstate cover the cost of repairs, as well as additional living expenses, the suit states.

However, Allstate denied Self's claim for the repairs of his property, even though the policy provided coverage for losses, they claim.

Allstate told Self it would not pay the full proceeds of the policy, although demand was made for it, which constitutes a breach of the insurance contract, the suit states.

"Defendant misrepresented to Plaintiff that the damage to the property was not covered under the policy, even though the damage was caused by a covered occurrence," the suit states.

Alsstate also failed to make an attempt to settle Self's claim in a fair manner, a violation of the Texas Insurance Code, unfair settlement practices, he claims.

The company failed to explain the reason for its offer of an inadequate settlement, another violation of the Texas Insurance Code, according to the complaint.

Allstate failed to affirm or deny coverage of the claim within a reasonable time frame, the suit states.

It refused to fully compensate Self, even though it did not conduct a reasonable investigation, which constitutes another violation of the Texas Unfair Competition and Unfair Practices Act, Self alleges.

Allstate committed numerous violations of the Texas Unfair Settlement Practices, according to the complaint.

It breached its contract with Self by refusing to pay the policy, according to the suit.

Self is seeking unspecified economic damages and three times the amount of his actual damages, plus attorney's fees, costs, 18 percent per annum interest and other relief the court deems just.

Rocky Lawdermilk of Beaumont will be representing him.

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

Case No. D183-369

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