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Rountree v. USAA Casualty Insurance Co.

United States District Court, D. Colorado

February 24, 2016



          NINA Y. WANG, Magistrate Judge.


         The Rule 16(b) Scheduling Conference is set for February 24, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. in Courtroom C-204 before Magistrate Judge Nina Y. Wang. Plaintiff Thomas Rountree is represented by Miles M. Dewhirst and Rick N. Haderlie of Dewhirst & Dolven, LLC, 102 S. Tejon St., Ste. 500, Colorado Springs, CO 80903, (719) 520-1421. Defendant USAA Casualty Insurance Company ("USAA CIC") is represented by Mr. Jeremy A. Moseley and Ms. Stefania C. Scott of Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell LLP, 370 17th Street, Suite 4500, Denver, Colorado, 80202, (303) 244-1800. Defendant State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company ("State Farm") is represented by Marc R. Levy and Heather E. Judd of Levy Wheeler Waters, Professional Corporation, 6400 S. Fiddlers Green Circle, Suite 900, Greenwood Village, CO 80111, (303) 796-2900.


         Defendant USAA CIC states the Court has subject matter jurisdiction over all claims in this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(1) because Plaintiff and Defendants are citizens of different states, and the amount in controversy exceeds the jurisdictional threshold, exclusive of interest and costs. Plaintiff is a citizen of the State of Colorado (ECF No. 5, ¶ 1). For purposes of diversity, a corporation is deemed to be a citizen of every state by which it has been incorporated and of the state where it has its principal place of business. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1).

         USAA CIC is a citizen of Texas (ECF No. 1, ¶¶ 20-22), as it is a Texas corporation with its principal place of business in San Antonio, Texas. State Farm is a citizen of Illinois, as it is an Illinois corporation with its principal place of business in Bloomington, Illinois. (ECF No. 26, ¶ 2.) See exhibits attached to State Farm's Response to Motion to Remand at Docket No. 30.

         Plaintiff asserts jurisdiction in this Court is inappropriate for lack of diversity because State Farm is a citizen of Colorado, with a principal place of business at 1555 Promontory Circle, Greeley, Colorado XXXXX-XXXX. Plaintiff's Motion to Remand is pending.


         a. Plaintiff(s):

         Plaintiff was seriously injured in a single vehicle accident that occurred on January 4, 2013 while Plaintiff was riding as a passenger in the vehicle. Plaintiff claims entitlement to Medical Payment policy benefits from USAA, and Underinsured Motorist (UIM) policy benefits from State Farm as a result of his injuries. Plaintiff claims damages for Defendants' unreasonable delay and denial of said benefits and asserts causes of action against both Defendants of breach of contract, insurance bad faith, and violation of C.R.S. § 10-3-1115. In addition, Plaintiff asserts violation of the Colorado Consumer Protection Act against USAA.

         b. Defendant USAA CIC:

         Defendant USAA CIC denies it breached any contractual obligations owed to Plaintiff, denies it acted in bad faith, denies that it acted unreasonably in the handling of Plaintiff's claim for medical payments benefits, and denies that it violated the Colorado Consumer Protection Act. The medical payments insuring agreement provides that USAA CIC will pay only the reasonable fee for medically necessary and appropriate medical services that result from bodily injury sustained by a covered person in an auto accident and that are for services rendered within one year of the date of the auto accident. USAA CIC disclosed the medical payments provisions, including the one-year limitation, to its policyholder Ken W. Tell ("Tell"). Plaintiff submitted a number of medical bills for services that were not related to the accident and submitted a number of bills for services that USAA CIC determined were not medically necessary and appropriate. Plaintiff also submitted medical bills for services rendered more than one year from the date of the accident, which are not covered pursuant to the express terms of the policy. USAA CIC complied with the policy provisions and Colorado law in its adjustment Plaintiff's medical payments claims.

         c. Defendant State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company:

         Defendant, State Farm, denies that it wrongfully delayed or denied Plaintiff's claim. State Farm denies any and all wrong doing with respect to the investigation and evaluation of Plaintiff's claims. At all times, State Farm acted reasonably in its investigation and evaluation of Plaintiff's claims.


         The following facts are undisputed:

         1. On or about January 4, 2013, Tell was operating a 2008 BMW M3 at or about 6410 Austin Bluffs Parkway, Colorado Springs, Colorado, with Plaintiff as a passenger, when they were involved in a single vehicle automobile accident.

         2. Tell was at-fault in the accident.

         3. At the time of the accident Plaintiff was a covered person pursuant to the terms of an automobile insurance policy, Policy No. 00502 21 51C 7101 4 (the "Policy"), which included medical payments coverage of $100, 000 per person, subject to all applicable conditions, exclusions, limits, and terms.

         4. At the time of the accident, Plaintiff was also insured by State Farm under policy(ies) providing Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverages.

         5. Under both the Medical Payment and UIM policies, Plaintiff is a first party Claimant within the meaning of C.R.S. § 10-3-1115(b)(I).

         6. Plaintiff also made claims to USAA for Medical Payment benefits, and to State Farm for UIM benefits.

         7. Plaintiff settled his claims against Kenneth Tell for limits of liability insurance available to Mr. Tell.

         8. State Farm consented to Plaintiff's settlement of his claims against Kenneth Tell.


          [Include a computation of all categories of damages sought and the basis and theory for calculating damages. See Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(a)(1)(A)(iii). This should include the claims of all parties. It should also include a description of the economic damages, non-economic damages, and physical impairment claimed, if any.]

         a. Plaintiff's position:

         Plaintiff claims $100, 000 in UIM benefits from State Farm, and $51, 522.13 from USAA, and any other additional policy benefits for continuing medical expenses to which Plaintiff is entitled. In addition, Plaintiff claims damages for Defendants' breach of their respective duties of good faith and fair dealing, and unreasonable delay and denial, including but not limited to reasonable attorney fees and court costs and two times the covered benefit pursuant to C.R.S. § 10-3-1116(1). In addition, against USAA Plaintiff claims three times the amount of actual damages, costs, and reasonable attorney fees as ...

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