The Connecticut Superior Court denied the insurance carrier's motion for summary judgment in O'Connor v. QBE Insurance Corp., No. CV126032396, 2018 WL 4838937 (Conn. Super. Ct. Sept. 19, 2018).
The Connecticut court held that the adjustment of claims can also be the negligent infliction of emotional distress. The carrier argued against the negligent infliction of emotional distress on many grounds.
The Connecticut court rejected each and every one of the grounds for summary judgment that the carrier raised in that case, including this one, that the carrier never dealt directly with the plaintiffs. The carrier's policy was issued to a condominium association, and while the plaintiffs were owners of units in the condominium, they were not the policyholders and the carrier did not deal directly with them on their claims for damages to their unit.
The court rejected this as a good reason for the carrier's summary judgment motion in that case:
The defendants' various claims are in conflict with both the law and the evidentiary record, and the plaintiffs' objections are well taken. Accordingly, the defendants have not shown that they are entitled to summary judgment on the plaintiffs' negligent infliction of emotional distress claims. As relates to the defendants' claim that their lack of direct contact with the plaintiffs precludes the plaintiffs' recovery on a negligent infliction of emotional distress claim, they have cited no law in support of that proposition. In fact, there is no such requirement; rather, the plaintiffs are correct that the relevant inquiry focuses on a defendant's conduct, the foreseeability of that conduct causing a plaintiff emotional distress, and whether the plaintiff's distress actually is attributable to the defendant's conduct rather than some other circumstance.
O'Connor v. QBE Insurance Corp., No. CV126032396, 2018 WL 4838937, at *4 (Conn. Super. Ct. Sept. 19, 2018) (emphasis added).
The court also rejected the carrier's proffered reasons for entering summary judgment in its favor on the plaintiffs' remaining claims under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act and the Connecticut Unfair Insurance Practices Act. O'Connor v. QBE Insurance Corp., No. CV126032396, 2018 WL 4838937, at *7-*8 (Conn. Super. Ct. Sept. 19, 2018).
So, the way things look now, all of these claims are going to trial in this case.
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