MAY 2014 BAD FAITH CASES: INSURED CANNOT BRING UNJUST ENRICHMENT CLAIM IN SUITS OVER INSURANCE POLICY (Middle District)

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In Stephens v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Company, the court was faced with common law bad faith claims in the context of the insured pleading breach of contract and unjust enrichment. The insurer moved to dismiss the unjust enrichment claims. The Magistrate Judge recommended dismissal on the basis that where a written contract exists, a party cannot bring an unjust enrichment claim under Pennsylvania law. Citing recent Third Circuit case law, the court observed the principle that such unjust enrichment claims cannot be made in the insurance contract setting.

The District Court adopted the Report and Recommendation and the unjust enrichment count was dismissed.

Date of Decision: Report and Recommendation March 24, 2014, adopted by District Court on May 5, 2014.

Stephens v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., Civil Action No. 1:14-CV-160, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 62559, March 24, 2014 (Report and Recommendation of Carlson, M.J.),

adopted in Stephens v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 61750 (M.D. Pa. May 5, 2014) (Conner, J.)

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