COURT DENIES MOTION TO REMAND – ADJUSTER IMPROPERLY JOINED
Last Wednesday, a U.S. District Court Judge for the Northern District of Texas denied an insured’s motion to remand and granted an adjuster’s motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim. In Springcrest Partners, LLC v. Admiral Insurance Company, 2012 WL 4459423 (N.D.Tex. September 26, 2012), the insured sued its insurer, an adjusting company, and the in-state adjuster alleging breach of contract and Insurance Code violations arising from a claim following a 2010 snow storm. Before the insurer was served, the adjusting company and adjuster removed the case alleging that the adjuster was fraudulently joined to defeat diversity jurisdiction and then filed a motion to dismiss.
The court examined the allegations asserted and noted in part that “the petition makes broad, conclusory allegations that often fail to distinguish between the actions of Admiral, Engle Martin and Cimino” the adjuster. Further, examining the alleged Insurance Code violations the court observed in part that “[t]hese allegations are really legal conclusions masquerading as factual allegations, and they lack factual support in the petition.” Accordingly, the court dismissed the adjuster from the lawsuit and denied plaintiff’s motion to remand.