Ayers v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company et al

Filing 58

ORDER denying without prejudice 33 motion to dismiss; denying 53 Motion. Signed by Judge Roy B. Dalton, Jr. on 10/19/2017. (VMF)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT MIDDLE DISTRICT OF FLORIDA ORLANDO DIVISION FRANK AYERS, Plaintiff, v. Case No. 6:17-cv-1265-Orl-37TBS STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY; RUTH MIER GRAHAM; GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES INSURANCE COMPANY; TAMMY BOOTH; and STEVEN HERSH, Defendants. _____________________________________ ORDER In the instant action, Plaintiff asserts, among others, a putative class action breach-of-contract claim (“Class Claim”) against Defendant State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company (“State Farm”). (Doc. 2.) The Class Claim rests on the theory that State Farm is required to provide its insureds with counsel prior to the initiation of a third-party bodily injury lawsuit (“Coverage Issue”). (See id. ¶¶ 101, 103.) After State Farm removed the action to this Court (see Doc. 31), the Court concluded that it lacked sufficient evidence to determine whether State Farm had satisfied the Class Action Fairness Act’s jurisdictional threshold and ordered it show cause why this case should not be remanded. (Doc. 36. (“Show Cause Order”).) State Farm and Plaintiff responded to the Show Cause Order (see Docs. 40, 45, 51), and the matter was set for a hearing on October 17, 2017 (“October 17 Hearing”) (Doc. 50). At the -1- October 17 Hearing, the Undersigned addressed the Show Cause Order and considered several pending motions. (See Doc. 57.) So consistent with Court’s rulings at its October 17 Hearing, it is ORDERED and ADJUDGED as follows: 1. The Court’s Show Cause Order (Doc. 36) is DISCHARGED. 2. Defendant State Farm’s Motion to Dismiss Complaint and Incorporated Memorandum of Law (Doc. 33) is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. 3. Defendant State Farm’s Motion to Redesignate Case from Track Two to Track Three and Motion to Bifurcate Discovery (Doc. 53) is DENIED. 4. On or before Friday, October 27, 2017, the parties are DIRECTED to file a case management report. 5. The deadline to complete discovery on the Coverage Issue identified in this Order is Tuesday, January 16, 2018. 6. On or before Thursday, February 15, 2018, the parties are DIRECTED to file cross-motions for summary judgment limited to the Coverage Issue. Fourteen days following the filing of such motions, each party may file a response. DONE AND ORDERED in Chambers in Orlando, Florida, on October 19, 2017. Copies to: Counsel of Record -2-

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