ELKINS – A couple is suing Nationwide Insurance Company of America after they claim it wrongfully denied a claim for payment.

On Jan. 26, 2016, a fire totally destroyed the condominium unit owned by Wilma Sue Talbott and William Talbott , resulting in a total loss of the unit and complete destruction of all personal property located in the insured premises, according to a complaint originally filed in Webster Circuit Court and later removed to federal court.

The Talbotts claim following the loss of the insured premises, they demanded payment of the agreed upon policy limits of $47,100 under the personal property and loss of use provisions of their insurance policy with Nationwide.

Nationwide rejected the claim for payment of the policy limit under the personal property and loss of use provisions of the policy and has since refused to make adequate payment to the plaintiffs as was required under the policy, according to the suit.

The Talbotts claim the refusal was made without reasonable basis in fact or law and was done so in bad faith and for the purpose of denying the benefits of contract for loss of personal property and loss of use of the insured premises.

The defendants owed a duty to the plaintiffs to honor its contractual commitments under the policy; to evaluate the plaintiffs’ claims fairly; to attempt in good faith to effectuate a prompt, fair and equitable settlement of the plaintiffs’ claims; to not put its insureds through unnecessary litigation; and to act in good faith and to deal fairly with the plaintiffs, according to the suit.

The Talbotts claim the defendant breached its contract with them and caused them damages.

The Talbotts are seeking compensatory and punitive damages. They are being represented by Dan L. Hardway of Hardway Law.

Nationwide is represented by Denise D. Pentino and Christopher J. Prezioso of Dinsmore & Shohl.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia case number: 2:17-cv-00057

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