WINFIELD – Cav’s Coach Company LLC is suing an insurance company it claims the company breached its contract and its actions constituted fraud.
National Liability & Fire Insurance Company and Consolidated Claims Services Inc were named as defendants in the suit.
On May 12, 2015, National issued its draft in the amount of $30,000 to Cav’s and its lien holder and, at the time, National knew its payment was at the very least, $5,000 less than the amount Cav’s required to be fully compensated for its damages from an accident that had occurred the month before, according to a complaint filed May 12 in Putnam Circuit Court.
Cav’s claims National hired Consolidated to investigate the accident and adjust Cav’s claim and Consolidated acted as National’s agent in connection with its investigation and adjustment of Cav’s claim on behalf of National.
Cav’s was unable to arrange a replacement bus on a short-term basis to complete its scheduled charters or book new ones after the accident and incurred additional losses from having to cancel previously scheduled charters, according to the suit.
The defendant should have been aware that the actual cash or market value of Cav’s bus was in excess of $50,000 based on motor coaches of the same make, model and year with a 57-seat capacity available for sale at the time, according to the suit.
Cav’s claims rather than expedite payment as it had repeatedly requested, National required Cav’s to meet with Consolidated under the guise of Cav’s signing a sworn proof of loss to complete National’s file and when Cav’s president, Chris Cavender, requested Consolidated bring any document he would be required to sign to his office, explaining he was legally blind and required the use of a commercial grade document magnifier to read any document, Consolidated refuse.
Cavender complained to Consolidated that he could barely make out the title, much less the small print and expressed his frustration over not being able to read it but Consolidated assured him it was a standard proof of loss form needed to confirm the details of the make, model, year of the bus and details of the accident.
Cav’s claims Consolidated’s adjuster then put his finger on the document where Cavender needed to sign and he relied on the defendant’s assurances that the sworn statement was a standard proof of loss form and he signed it.
The sworn statement was not in accord with the terms of the national policy, but substantially changed Cav’s rights under the National policy to fully recover 100 percent of its damages before any assignment of its rights to National would be required.
Cav’s claims the defendants did not inform Cavender that if he signed the sworn statement that Cav’s was giving up its right to recover its deductible and all uninsured damages it suffered from the accident from the insurer or the man who caused the accident.
The sworn statement falsely represented that the actual cash value of the bus was $35,000, as well as other false statements.
The defendants breached their contract with Cav’s and their actions constituted common law fraud, according to the suit.
Cav’s is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. It is being represented by Michael D. Weikle.
The case was assigned to Circuit Judge Joseph Reeder.
Putnam Circuit Court case number: 16-C-115