Suit filed against insurance company demanding payment

By John O'Brien | Sep 6, 2006

CHARLESTON - A Taylor County man who missed two months of work says his insurance company has failed to pay his disability insurance claim.

Gary Jones filed a lawsuit Aug. 28 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Trustmark Insurance Company and Ward Services.

Jones says that Trustmark will not pay because it says Jones lied on his insurance application.

"Mr. Jones was truthful with the defendants at all times relevant and the defendants' refusal to pay Mr. Jones his insurance benefits is wrongful and illegal," the complaint says.

On April 26, Jones says he suffered severe chest pains and was taken to United Hospital Center in Clarksburg. His condition caused him to miss two weeks of work, and he filed a claim for disability benefits.

Trustmark then contacted him and accused him of lying, the lawsuit says.

"The defendant Trustmark acted with actual malice and failed to effectuate a prompt, fair and equitable settlement of the plaintiff's claim for policy proceeds," the lawsuit.

Jones and wife Glenda are seeking those proceeds, as well as compensatory damages for emotional distress, annoyance, aggravation and inconvenience.

They also make a claim for punitive damages.

Charleston attorney Christopher Heavens is representing them.

Judge Jennifer Bailey Walker has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1741

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