Tom Moody Granted Summary Judgment for Client in Insurance-Policy Dispute￼
Clausen Miller partner Tom Moody recently secured summary judgment for his client against a lawsuit alleging breach of an insurance policy filed in the Northern District of Florida. In McPherson et al v. Lexington Insurance Company, District Judge T. Kent Wetherell, II granted the defense’s motion for summary judgment and entered a judgment in favor of the defendant.
The plaintiffs’ home in Panama City Beach, Florida was insured under a homeowners’ policy through Lexington Insurance Company in 2018, when it suffered damage from Hurricane Michael. In response, Lexington paid plaintiffs $457,000 for the damage—over $25,000 of which was meant to replace windows and doors. However, the plaintiffs then claimed they were owed additional payouts for additional property damaged by the hurricane. The plaintiffs then filed suit against Lexington in October 2020 alleging that Lexington did not pay the full amount owed under the insurance policy.
The defense argued that the plaintiffs’ insurance policy excluded damage caused by latent defaults or faulty design. Experts on behalf of the defense claimed that the water intrusion and interior damage were caused by design and construction defects, hence rendering them ineligible for coverage under their insurance policy.
Judge Wetherell found that the plaintiffs did not provide sufficient evidence that the defendant breached its insurance contract. He also cited the expert testimony presented by the defense arguing the damage was caused by attributable design and construction in his decision.
Tom focuses his practice on civil litigation defense, with an emphasis on first-party property disputes. He also has extensive experience successfully representing civil defendants in matters including insurer bad faith, commercial-premises liability, professional liability and malpractice, governmental-entity liability, pre-suit coverage analysis, admiralty and maritime claims, wrongful-death claims, and personal injury claims.
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