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Haley Williams v. USAA Insurance Agency, Inc.
Case Number: 1:20-cv-153
Judge: Sharion Aycock
Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi (Monore County)
Defendant's Attorney: Charles Greg Copeland and Timothy J. Sterling
Description: Aberdeen, Mississippi criminal defense lawyer represented Plaintiff, who sued Defendant on a bad faith breach of an insurance contract theory claiming more than $75,000 in damages as a direct result.
Like most states, Mississippi allows insureds to sue insurance companies for failing to deal honestly and fairly with their insureds. "Under Mississippi law, a finding of coverage is a necessary predicate to bringing a punitive damages claim.” Sobley v. S. Nat. Gas Co., 210 F.3d 561, 564(5th Cir. 2000). “In order to recover punitive damages against an insurance company for bad-faith refusal to pay a claim, or refusal to honor an obligation under an insurance policy, the insured must first demonstrate that the claim or obligation was in fact owed .... Second, the insured must demonstrate that the insurer has no arguable reason to refuse to pay the claim or to perform its contractual obligation. Finally, in order to recover punitive damages from the insurer for bad faith, the insured must demonstrate that the insurer’s breach of the insurance contract ‘results from an intentional wrong, insult, or abuse as well as from such gross negligence as constitutes an intentional tort.’” Essingerv. Liberty Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 529 F.3d 264, 271 (5th Cir. 2008).
Outcome: 02/13/2023 98 Minute Entry for proceedings held before Magistrate Judge David A. Sanders: Settlement Conference held on 2/13/2023. Case settled. Associated Cases: 1:20-cv-00154-SA-DAS, 1:20-cv-00153-SA-DAS (def)
02/13/2023 99 ORDER DISMISSING CASE without prejudice by reason of settlement. This CASE is CLOSED. Signed by District Judge Sharion Aycock on 2/13/2023. Associated Cases: 1:20-cv-00153-SA-DAS, 1:20-cv-00154-SA-DAS (tjw)