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Petition for Declaratory Judgment Granted for Automobile Insurer

May 26, 2009

Fred Valz filed a declaratory judgment action on behalf of an automobile insurer, contending that the insurer had no further duty to defend or indemnify its insured because she breached her duty under the policy to cooperate with the insurer and because she and and her assignees engaged in fraudulent conduct designed to manufacture a bad faith claim against the insurer. Following submission of letter briefs, the District Court held that insurer did not act in bad faith in paying policy limits without conditioning payment on release of its insured. Accordingly, the Court granted the insurer’s Petition for Declaratory Judgment and the Eleventh Circuit affirmed on appeal. In an unpublished opinion, the District Court also dismissed, sua sponte, the assignees’ lawsuit for bad faith.

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