A Party Advancing a Claim for Insurance Monies is not necessarily an Adverse Party

A party that is not advancing a claim for insurance money cannot be an adverse party for the purposes of litigation under section 176 of the Insurance Act, RSNB 1973, c.I-12.

Blue Cross Life Insurance Company of Canada v. Crawford, [2015] N.B.J. No. 147, May 27, 2015, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, R.T. French J.

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An insurer's application for summary judgment was dismissed as the court could not determine the limitation period for a claim alleging bad faith.

Redden v. Manufacturers Life Insurance Co., [2013] N.B.J. No. 309, October 4, 2013, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, P.C. Garnett J.

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Action by the insured for interpretation of a long-term disability plan. The insured was on long-term disability after she was injured in a motor vehicle accident. She received a global amount from the defendant in settlement of the motor vehicle litigation. The insurer deducted from her benefits payments some of the money she received in settlement for wage compensation; otherwise, she would be overpaid for that head of damage. The plan included a provision which stated that if a lump sum payment is made under judgment or settlement for loss of future income or earning capacity, the insurer will be "entitled to make a determination of the amount of compensation this represents on a monthly basis and to reduce the benefits for each month after the settlement or judgment by the amount of the Employee's overcompensation." The court held that the insurer was entitled to deduct an amount each month for wage compensation to make up for the insured's overpayment since receiving her settlement, and that the onus was on the plaintiff seeking benefits, and not the insurer, to prove how much of her global settlement amount was comprised of wage compensation versus other heads of damages.

Carter v. New Brunswick, [2013] N.B.J. No. 274, August 12, 2013, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, Trial Division, J. Ouellette J.

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A vacant property may not be entitled to fire insurance

A plaintiff filed a claim against his insurer after his home was destroyed by fire. The plaintiff’s claim was dismissed.

Duguay v. Lloyd's Underwriters, [2012] N.B.J. No. 438, October 31, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench - Trial Division, R. Léger J.

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A claim for coverage for damages incurred prior to the inception of an insurance contract will be excluded

Unsuccessful application by the insured for an order that the insurer was in breach of its obligation to defend and indemnify the insured. The third party claim against the insured did not trigger coverage and nonetheless would have been excluded on the basis the claim occurred well before the inception of the policy.

Bathurst (City) v. Lloyd's Underwriters, [2012] N.B.J. No. 355, August 27, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, R. Léger J.

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A person's life insurance policy may be void where his or her death iarising from drug or alcohol use

An application by a widow for an order that a group creditor insurer pay her pursuant to a policy of insurance following her husband’s death. The application was dismissed.

Laird v. First Canadian Insurance Corp., [2012] N.B.J. No. 132, April 26, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen’s Bench, P.S. Glennie J.

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Summary dismissal of an action may not be appropriate when an investigation of the facts is required

Dismissal of an application by the insurer under Rules 22.04(3) and 23.01(1) for a determination of a question of law. The court found that the issue of whether the plaintiffs’ had any cause of action was not appropriate where a full investigation of the facts was required.

Sussey v. Portage Mutual Insurance Co., [2012] N.B.J. No. 235, July 4, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, J.L. Clendening J.

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An insured need only disclose a material change in risk if he or she is aware of that the change in activity increases the risk of loss

The insurer denied the insured’s claim alleging non-disclosure of a material change in the risk. The use of the insured’s motor vehicle in a performance driving school was a change material to the risk; however, the insured did not know that the change in the situation was material to the risk and therefore the duty to disclose under Statutory Condition 1 did not apply. The insured’s action for breach of contract was granted.

Violette v. Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Co., [2012] N.B.J. No. 46, February 10, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, L.A. LaVigne J.

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Failing to obtain insurance may not give rise to an occurence under a CGL policy.

Application for a declaration of a duty to defend dismissed because there was no occurrence under the policy of insurance and there was no possibility of a duty to indemnify.

Co-operators General Insurance Co. v. Assn. of New Brunswick Cemeteries, [2012] N.B.J. No. 4, January 10, 2012, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, J.L. Clendening J.

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A claims administrator may owe a duty of good faith to an insured.

Where an insurer acts as a claims administration service only but makes decisions regarding the adjudication of claims, computation and issuance of benefits it owes a duty to the insured to act in good faith as it was adjudicating claims and benefits. As such, the traditional tort of intentional procurement of breach of contract is broad enough to capture bad faith actions by an adjuster that bring about the rejection of a meritorious claim for insurance benefits.

LeBlanc v. Atlantic Blue Cross Care, [2011] N.B.J. No. 446, December 12, 2011, New Brunswick Court of Queen's Bench, G.S. Rideout J.

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