April 2017 Bad Faith Cases: Conclusory Allegations Do Not Give Rise To a Bad Faith Claim (Philadelphia Federal)

The court granted an insurer’s 12(b)(6) motion on a bad faith claim related to the handling of an insured’s motorcycle accident. The insured’s complaint contained nineteen separate general allegations of conduct that purportedly demonstrated the insurer’s bad faith in handling the insured’s claim. The allegations were broadly worded and included assertions, among others, that the insurer had failed to “properly investigate” the insured’s claim and had “adopted a company practice of intentionally undervaluing uninsured motorist claims and delaying paying said claims for an unreasonable period of time.” The complaint, however, was devoid of any specific facts that the court could reasonably rely on to support a plausible claim for liability toward the insurer.

The court explained that “plaintiff had not alleged sufficient or specific facts to support his claim that [the insurer] had acted in bad faith . . ..” The court further observed that the insured had actually “not set forth any factual allegations to support his general legal claims.” Thus, the court dismissed the insured’s bad faith count, but without prejudice.

Date of Decision: December 5, 2016

Talotta v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., No. 16-55557, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 167248 (E.D. Pa. Dec. 5, 2016) (Ditter, J.)