As proof that I try to be fair and balanced, a big BRAVO! to all the insurance companies who recognize that those doing automobile repairs deserve a safe working environment. The vast majority of all the insurance companies are paying the extra costs to sanitize automobiles from the coronavirus before repair.
Continue Reading Safeco and Geico Put Money Over Car Repairmen’s Safety When It Comes to COVID-19

In January 2011, I wrote a series of posts titled A Wisconsin Policyholder’s Success in a Bad Faith Lawsuit Against Safeco. In the case, the policyholders suffered extensive water and mold damage and filed a claim with Safeco. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin ruled in favor of the policyholders, finding their losses were covered by the policy and concluding that Safeco acted in bad faith when handling their claim. Safeco appealed the District Court’s decision and today I am writing about the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision.


Continue Reading Safeco Loses Bad Faith Appeal

When evaluating the various bad faith allegations that can be asserted against a carrier, a number of things come to mind. Some of my prior posts addressed programs that are implemented to reward insurance company adjusters for paying less on claims. Some of my posts addressed how policyholders are subtly, if not overtly, discouraged from retaining a public adjuster or an attorney despite their right to do so. Other posts talked about legally strategic maneuvers taken by insurance companies, possibly Safeco, to play hard ball or not to play fair at all when it comes to litigating a bad faith case.

Continue Reading Is Safeco “Hiding the Ball” ?

Today, I will wrap up my evaluation of a favorable bad faith decision against Safeco. Last week, I began addressing the damages awarded by the court.

The Millers contended that they were entitled to prejudgment interest in the amount of $256,459.92 pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 628.46, which stated:

Insurance claims shall bear interest at the rate of twelve percent per year if not paid within thirty days after the insurer is furnished written notice of the fact and amount of the covered loss.


Continue Reading A Wisconsin Policyholder’s Success in a Bad Faith Lawsuit Against Safeco, Part V

I am picking up were I left off last week in my post titled A Wisconsin Policyholder’s Success in a Bad Faith Lawsuit Against Safeco, Part III, discussing a favorable bad faith decision against Safeco. My posts over the course of the last few weeks addressed the grounds upon which Safeco denied the Millers’ claim and the analysis applied by the Wisconsin federal Court when finding in favor of the Millers. This will be my second to last post on this decision, and I would like to start discussing the damages that were awarded.


Continue Reading A Wisconsin Policyholder’s Success in a Bad Faith Lawsuit Against Safeco, Part IV

A few months ago in my post titled "Going through the Motions" Is Usually Not Enough to Compel Bad Faith Discovery From an Insurer, I wrote about a particular policyholder’s attorney and his experience with discovery in a case against Safeco. The attorney researched extensively until he found a case compelling an insurer to produce the kind of materials he needed in his case. The opinion he found included details of the specific discovery requests at issue, so he modeled his own discovery requests after those in the opinion. After serving his discovery requests, Safeco served its responses and objections, which included the usual work product and attorney client objections, along with a few others that a policyholder’s attorney can expect to see when an insurer responds to bad faith discovery. Our colleague then filed his Motion to Compel citing, as persuasive authority (and among other things), the case upon which he had modeled his discovery requests. His “merely persuasive” authority consisted of facts and issues so similar to those in his case and presented an analysis so precise that the Judge ordered Safeco to produce a complete and un-redacted portion of its claims file. That case ultimately had a happy ending – well, at least for the policyholder. Because the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin’s Decision and Order is thorough, I will write about it over the course of the next 2-3 weeks.


Continue Reading A Wisconsin Policyholder’s Success in a Bad Faith Lawsuit Against Safeco

Last week in Don’t Forget to Consider the Severity of Your Claim, I wrote about what severity means in the insurance context. We also started to talk about how severity can affect whether the insured’s claim was handled fairly by the insurer. Let’s hear a little more about what some of these carriers have to say about it and whether it makes sense to you.


Continue Reading Don’t Forget to Consider the Severity of Your Claim: Part II

Many of you probably think that I am referring to the extent of damage of a claim or a claim involving a total loss. The word “severity” naturally conjures up the thought of something that is serious or grievous. But I’m actually writing about something many of you probably don’t know all that much about. In the arena of bad faith litigation, severity is a way that insurers measure claims employees’ performance. And, of course, it doesn’t stop there – you knew there was an angle, right? Yes, severity can affect whether your insured’s claim was properly handled by the insurance company. Severity is one of the many, important factors that you should consider in your bad faith case against a carrier. Let me tell you more…


Continue Reading Don’t Forget to Consider the Severity of Your Claim

I have previously written about how an insurance company can waive its right to appraisal by taking too long to invoke it, but are there other ways an insurance company can waive its right to an appraisal? For example, does an insurance company waive its right to appraisal when it recognizes some but not all of the damages claimed by the insured? What if the insurer anticipatorily breaches the insurance contract? The United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas recently weighed in on this issue in Boone v. Safeco Ins. Co. of Indiana, No. H-09-1613, 2010 WL 2303311 (S.D. Tex. June 7, 2010).

Continue Reading Waiver of Right to an Appraisal in Texas: Additional Arguments