Insurance Coverage / Bad Faith Cases


In United States ex rel. Bibby v. Wells Fargo, et al., Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, was associated by Relators' counsel while the case was still under seal after it became apparent the government would not intervene at that time. That case alleged that eight large financial institutions were committing fraud against the Veterans Administration by illegally charging veterans for attorneys' fees and other charges when they refinanced their VA-guaranteed IRRRL loans, contrary to the statute and regulations, and then sought payment on those fraudulently-guaranteed loans when the veteran defaulted. After the Government elected "not to intervene at this time," Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, secured settlements from six of the eight defendants-all of whom had filed motions to dismiss stating that the case had no merit-for over $161 million. These six defendants represent only approximately 30 percent of the market share, and BWP is still pursuing our clients' claims against the remaining two defendants-Wells Fargo and Mortgage Investors Corporation.

Insurer Bad Faith
$415,000 Cash Settlement

Delay in paying optional No-Fault PIP benefits.

3/88. McWilliams v. International Indemnity, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia.

Insurer Bad Faith
$411,250 Verdict ($400,000 punitive damages).

Delay in paying optional No-Fault PIP benefits. Proved defendant appealed adverse decision of governing case to U.S. Supreme Court solely for purposes of delaying necessity to pay claims such as this.

7/26/85 - Coachman v. International Indemnity, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia.

Insurance Bad Faith

7/2/91 . Soule v. McGahagan and Ziomek, Superior Court of Oconee County, Georgia.

Defendants' insurer refused to pay $15,000 policy limits, then filed suit against decedent's mother and others seeking a declaration of no coverage. Insurer lost that case before a jury and then paid over 26 times its policy limits to settle case.

Parker v. Life Investors Insurance Co. of America, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Ga., Case No. SU2004CV-3687-6. (finding that 327,401 certificates for which the defendant failed to timely produce a loan termination date in response to the Court's Order terminated prior to their scheduled maturities.) (order vacated as part of settlement).

Buckner v. Resource Life, 304 Ga. App. 719, S.E.2d 19 (2010) (unanimous panel of the Georgia Court of Appeals affirming the trial court's imposition of sanctions).

Pierce v. Universal Underwriters Life Insurance Company, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia.

Credit Insurance Class Action. Unearned premium refunds due as a result of early termination of insured loans. Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, served as co-class counsel with Samuel W. Oates of Oates & Courville in Columbus in a class action settlement which was preliminarily approved by Judge Doug Pullen on March 14, 2008. Pierce v. Universal Underwriters had been certified as a class action on March 5, 2007. Most such settlements in the past have been on a "claims made" approach. Class counsel conceived a different approach calculated to identify and locate more insureds due refunds. UULIC has agreed to create a database of information about potential class members who may be entitled to unearned premium refunds due to early termination. That database will then be turned over to class counsel and to Rust Consulting, a national settlement administration firm, which will act as settlement administrator. UULIC will pay $49 million into an interest-bearing trust fund to be used to pay refunds due to all class members who can be located, costs of administration, and attorney fees (which will be set by the court). Class counsel and Rust consulting will then use lender contacts and credit reporting agency analysis to determine the loan termination dates for all insureds within the applicable states' statutes of limitation, and determine thereby which insureds are due refunds as a result of early termination, obtain updated addresses for such insureds, and issue refunds. All funds remaining will be placed in a remainder fund, to be donated to appropriate charitable institutions as decided by a remainder fund committee appointed by the court. The settlement will be administered by the court and class counsel.

At Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, we have the resources and experience it takes to successfully pursue complex personal injury, wrongful death, and product liability litigation. Contact us today. We would be happy to discuss your case with you.