TX LEGAL EDGE

56

5th Circuit Warning to Insured – Notify your Insurance Company

Carol Keough February 1, 2013

On January 17, 2013, the Federal Fifth Circuit affirmed a summary judgment against an insured, Mr. Reeder, for his mistake of keeping  his insurance company in the dark.  Jamestown Insurance Company, the insurer, argued on appeal that because of the conduct of Mr. Reeder, their insured, Jamestown Insurance Company was not required to defend or indemnify him in a Texas state court lawsuit.  It seems that Mr. Reeder decided to handle his own lawsuit and then when things did not go that well and a judgment was entered against him, he tried to get Jamestown Insurance Company to step in and pay.  Mr. Reeder has a provision in his insurance policy requiring him to notify Jamestown “as soon as praciticable of any ‘occurence’ which may result in a claim.”  The Fifth Circuit decided Mr. Reeder loses because he failed to tell Jamestown Insurance Company about the claim when they could have helped him and therefore prejudiced Jamestown.    The Fifth Circuit does not want you to sit on your hand and then dump a judment in the Insurance Company’s lap.  Follow this link to read the case:

http://member.bar5thfed.org/2013/01/28/jamestown-insurance-company-rrg-v-reeder-no-12-20437-summary-calendar/

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