Mercury Insurance Company Responsible for Punitive Damages for failing to pay insurance Claim

In Amerigraphics, Inc. v. Mercury Casualty Co. a jury determined that Mercury insurance breached the covenant of good faith and fair dealing by denying its policy holder insurance benefits for loss of income under its business interruption coverage.

The trial court found that the language in Mercury’s insurance policy was not vague and ambiguous. The court found that the plain language of the policy provided coverage for both net income and continuing normal operating expenses without having to offset one against the other.

Testimony at trial proved that all Mercury had to do was provide its policy holder with a working scanner and printer and pay the claim in a timely manner the policy holder could have kept the business going.

Instead the delays caused by the way Mercury handled the claim caused their policy holder to go out of business.

The jury determined that an agent or employee of Mercury Casualty Company engaged in conduct with malice, fraud, or oppression in support of punitive damages.

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