News Brief

Spitaletto and Delabar Obtain Unanimous Defense Verdict and Recovery on Counterclaim in Arson Case

February 16, 2023

Tommy Spitaletto (Partner-Dallas, TX) and Tim Delabar (Associate-Dallas, TX) defended a large insurance client in a four-day trial against plaintiffs seeking renter’s insurance coverage, alleging more than $600,000 in damages. Despite the test result of another insurer’s fire investigator that did not show an accelerant, Tommy and Tim developed evidence during the lawsuit that supported fraud by the insured and arson – notoriously difficult to prove based on circumstantial evidence. A cell phone expert also testified that the plaintiff could not have been located where he claimed, because plaintiff’s cell phone accessed a cell tower within three miles of the loss location within minutes of the fire starting. The jury unanimously rejected the plaintiffs’ breach of the policy claim, as well as statutory “bad faith” claims of deceptive trade practices and unfair claims settlement practices. The jury awarded $39,000 on our client’s counterclaims as repayment of the amount advanced to the plaintiffs during the claim investigation prior to obtaining the evidence of arson.

View more News Briefs