Allied Shipyard, Inc. et al v. Chubb European Group, SE
ORDER: IT IS ORDERED that Chubb's 82 motion for partial judgment on the pleadings, or alternatively, partial summary judgment seeking dismissal of plaintiffs' bad faith claims for penalties and attorney's fees brought under La. R.S. 22:1892 and 22:1973 is GRANTED, and those claims are DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.. Signed by Judge Barry W Ashe on 1/6/2022. (pp)
Case 2:20-cv-00640-BWA-MBN Document 84 Filed 01/07/22 Page 1 of 2
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
ALLIED SHIPYARD, INC., and
THE GRAY INSURANCE COMPANY
SECTION M (5)
CHUBB EUROPEAN GROUP, SE
Before the Court is a motion by defendant Chubb European Group, SE (“Chubb”) for
partial judgment on the pleadings, or alternatively, partial summary judgment seeking dismissal
of plaintiffs’ bad faith claims for penalties and attorney’s fees brought under La. R.S. 22:1892
and 22:1973.1 The motion was set for submission on January 13, 2022.2 Local Rule 7.5 of the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana requires that a memorandum in
opposition to a motion be filed no later than eight days before the noticed submission date, which
deadline in this instance was January 5, 2022. Plaintiffs Allied Shipyard, Inc. and The Gray
Insurance Company (collectively, “Plaintiffs”), which are represented by counsel, did not file an
opposition. Accordingly, because the motion is unopposed and it appears to the Court that the
motion has merit,3
R. Doc. 82.
R. Doc. 82-5.
Plaintiffs filed this suit against Chubb seeking coverage under a marine hull insurance policy for a sunken
dry dock. R. Doc. 1. Plaintiffs included in the complaint a claim for bad faith penalties under La. R.S. 22:1892 and
22:1973 for failure to pay the insurance claim. Id. at 8. “In order to establish a cause of action for penalties and/or
attorney fees and costs under [La. R.S. 22:1892, formerly] La. R.S. 22:658, a claimant must show that (1) an insurer
has received satisfactory proof of loss, (2) the insurer failed to tender payment within thirty days of receipt thereof,
and (3) the insurer’s failure to pay is arbitrary, capricious or without probable cause.” Guillory v. Lee, 16 So. 3d 1104,
1126 (La. 2009). Similarly, La. R.S. 22:1973 authorizes an award of penalties when an insurer’s failure to pay a claim
within 60 days after receipt of satisfactory proof of loss is “arbitrary, capricious, or without probable cause.” La. R.S.
22:1973(B)(5). The conduct prohibited by each statute is virtually identical with the primary difference between the
statutes being a 30- or 60-day period for payment of claims. Calogero v. Safeway Ins. Co., 753 So. 2d 170, 174 (La.
2000). “The phrase ‘arbitrary, capricious, or without probable cause’ is synonymous with ‘vexatious,’ and a
‘vexatious refusal to pay’ means ‘unjustified, without reasonable or probable cause or excuse.’” La. Bag Co. v.
Case 2:20-cv-00640-BWA-MBN Document 84 Filed 01/07/22 Page 2 of 2
IT IS ORDERED that Chubb’s motion for partial judgment on the pleadings, or
alternatively, partial summary judgment seeking dismissal of plaintiffs’ bad faith claims for
penalties and attorney’s fees brought under La. R.S. 22:1892 and 22:1973 (R. Doc. 82) is
GRANTED, and those claims are DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.
New Orleans, Louisiana, this 6th day of January, 2022.
BARRY W. ASHE
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Audubon Indem. Co., 999 So. 2d 1104, 1114 (La. 2008) (quoting Reed v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins., Co., 857 So. 2d
1012, 1021 (La. 2003)). “[A]n insurer must pay any undisputed amount over which reasonable minds could not
differ.” Dupree v. Lafayette Ins. Co., 51 So. 3d 673, 698 (La. 2010). “[W]hen there is a ‘reasonable and legitimate
question as to the extent and causation of a claim, bad faith should not be inferred from an insurer's failure to pay
within the statutory time limits when such reasonable doubts exist.’” La. Bag, 999 So. 2d at 1114 (quoting Reed, 857
So. 2d at 1021); see also Kodrin v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 314 F. App’x 671, 679 (5th Cir. 2009) (“An insurer
does not act arbitrarily or capriciously when its refusal to pay a claim is based on a genuine dispute over coverage or
the amount of the loss.”). There are no allegations in the complaint, nor is there any evidence in the record before the
Court, that Chubb acted in bad faith by failing to pay the claim in a manner that was arbitrary, capricious, or without
probable cause. Thus, Chubb’s motion has merit.
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