Like Dylan Favre signing with State perhaps? Or a link to the LA Times courtesy of Editilla as we welcome more folks to the FEMA map party along the with accompanying NFIP implications? Or my personal favorite in making good on my promise to insurance defense hoes H Scot Spragins and his sidekick Lucky Tucker to make them famous worldwide? Yep that is right guys (and as Nowdy will attest) many Laurel and Hardy web searches land on our pages each day. Care to guess where? LMAO!!!!!
Really hot – and much larger than the hot spot identified here and here – if Derek Wyatt’s 30(b)(6) deposition of Stephan Hinkle in Pontius v State Farm is considered:
I actually was in Biloxi when I wrote…[the Wind-Water Protocol]… And I had done — Iwent out and saw the damage, basically, and saw the — well, the first area I went to when I was there was right near this claim office on Pops Ferry Road in Biloxi (Location A). There’s this development called Destiny Plantation. (Location C) It’s right on the back bay of Biloxi. And I had occasion to drive down there. And I — there, I comprehended the nature of the damage, is what made me kind of outline in my mind how to do this.
But the gate to Destiny Plantation is on Brody Road (Location B), which is about a half a mile inland from the shore. You go in the gate and there was no damage whatsoever to the homes immediately around the gate. You take the road south toward the bay, and immediately you notice where the water stopped. And by the time you get down to the bay itself, the homes that were built were totally destroyed. They were slab homes. Which indicated to me that we’ve got a situation here.
How many other hot spots were there given the estimated number of State Farm policyholders with dual coverage Hinkle provided applied to the flooded areas of all three coastal counties and not just this one area in Biloxi?
Far from the claims handling equivalent of this literary masterpiece, the case of Kuehn v State Farm has more twists, turns and legal perversions than Anaïs Nin’s book on the writing of that literary masterpiece. We’ve presented this case on Slabbed in part to highlight the bad faith methods State Farm, with the help of the Mississippi Department of Insurance, utilized to adjust their slab claims on the coast after Katrina. Kuehn was also of interest because it gave us a chance to also highlight the type of lawyer State Farm uses to abuse the process in the proverbial “hired gun lawyer” in this case Oxford Mississippi based lawyers Scot Spragins and Lucky Tucker. On Monday of this week Nowdy profiled the fine mess the dufuses found themselves in after the plaintiff’s lawyer Earl Denham made them his beetch. Anita Lee covered the evidentiary hearing and frankly it doesn’t look good for Spragins or Tucker as State Farm had to take one for the team to save their hides (from being DQ’d as counsel) in the process laying bare their sleazy claims practices and the type of lawyer that will do anything (and I mean anything) to get on State Farm’s legal gravy train.
State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. argued in federal court Wednesday that the company should not have to pay policyholders $174,811.80 for Katrina damage attributed to wind because an umpire and two appraisers who set the amount strayed into determining the cause of loss.
State Farm policies give policyholders the option of appraisal when “the amount of the loss” is in dispute. Under Mississippi law, U.S. District Court Judge L.T. Senter Jr. has already ruled, appraisal is not meant to decide liability. State Farm polices cover wind damage, but loss from water is covered by federal flood insurance.
However, attorneys for policyholders Henry and June Kuehn of Ocean Springs presented evidence that only wind damage was considered during the appraisal process.
As provided under the policy, each side selected an appraiser and an umpire was appointed to resolve any disputes.
State Farm’s appraiser, John Minor, testified that only those damages above the water line were included in the appraisal award. The water line reached 2 feet onto the second floor of the Kuehn home.
Minor said a State Farm attorney who had offered confusing advice during the appraisal process was not happy with the result.
Nowdy has been doing yeoman’s work keeping Slabbed stocked with material in my absence but when she emailed me the recent case activity in Kuehn v State Farm I knew it was time to get back into the game. To bring everyone up to speed I highly recommend Nowdy’s two previous posts on this case which can be found here and here. The long story greatly shortened is the Kuehn’s invoked a policy provision called appraisal, a process involving three professionals that calculate the amount due under the policy in question. State Farm had “adjusted” the claim and paid the Kuehn’s the whopping sum of $10,765. The appraisers found $174,812 of covered damage. The Farm, through their Oxford based lawyers, went postal and now the case is before Judge Senter.
An interesting case twist came about during the deposition of State Farm appraiser John Minor in February of this year. During that depo it became very apparent State Farm lawyers H. Scot Spragins and Lucky Tucker had crossed the line from being legal advocates to agents of State Farm. When that fact became clear to Kuehn lawyer Earl Denham that such was indeed the case, Mr Minor’s depo was shut down with Mr Spragin’s acquiescence and State Farm hired new lawyers.
I wrote that short synopysis because I felt the need to refresh myself on the case. My memory’s reputation is impeccable but reading State Farm’s very curious case filings left me confused as to the events that lead us to this point – to the point where new State Farm lawyer John Banahan was misleading positing a rossmillerian fantasy of epic proportions. IMHO these filings are of the type that wastes valuable court time and short changes other policyholders that have now been waiting over three and a half years for their day in court.