- Two men seriously hurt in crash near Fruitland (9/21/16)3
- Perryville man arrested for alleged patronizing prostitution, harassment (9/23/16)6
- Eldorado Resorts to buy Isle of Capri Casinos (9/20/16)7
- Community helps Jackson family with two cases of muscular dystrophy (9/19/16)
- Video and evidence largely confirm trooper's claims in April traffic stop shooting (9/23/16)7
- Cape man may lose eye after shovel beating, police say (9/25/16)2
- Funeral procession of former Cape Girardeau police chief Henry H. Gerecke (9/22/16)17
- Cape man accused of attacking pregnant girlfriend (9/22/16)
- Show Me Center upgrades may allow facility to draw more elaborate shows (9/21/16)17
- Man convicted of Perryville convenience-store heist (9/21/16)
Court hits State Farm with $145 million judgment
SALT LAKE CITY -- The Utah Supreme Court reinstated a $145 million jury award against State Farm for underpaying insurance claims, cheating customers and destroying crucial documents. A lower court found State Farm had even investigated the sex life of a company whistleblower.
The case involved State Farm's refusal to pay $50,000 to settle a claim involving a 1981 Utah car accident that killed one driver and left another driver disabled.
The insurer wouldn't settle even though one of its investigators determined a State Farm policyholder, Curtis Campbell, was at fault for the accident.
Campbell, 83, was found at fault by a trial jury and held liable for $130,000 more than his $50,000 policy limit. State Farm eventually paid all the damages, including Campbell's personal liability, but Campbell still sued, alleging its refusal to settle was part of a companywide scheme to limit payments on claims.
A Utah jury awarded Campbell and his wife $145 million in punitive and $2.6 million in compensatory damages.
Those amounts were later reduced on an appeal to $25 million in punitive damages and $1 million in compensation.
Friday's 4-1 decision by the Utah Supreme Court reinstated the punitive award to $145 million and kept the compensation at $1 million.
Paul Belnap, State Farm's Utah lawyer, said the company was considering its options and could appeal. The company denies any improper dealings.