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PLAINTIFF’S Insurance Obligation – Wrongful denial of claim for car theft – Forged signature on vehicle title.

Miami-Dade County, FL

The estate of the decedent brought this action against the defendant automobile insurance carrier alleging that the defendant wrongfully denied a claim for theft of the decedent’s vehicle. The defendant maintained that the vehicle was given as a gift by the decedent and was not stolen.

The plaintiff alleged that, after the decedent’s death, a friend of the decedent broke into his home, stole his car keys and took the decedent’s ________ Land Rover LR2. The plaintiff contended that the friend transferred the vehicle to himself by forging the decedent’s name on the title and then sold it and kept the proceeds. The plaintiff’s handwriting expert testified that the signature on the title to the vehicle was a forgery.

The plaintiff claimed that the defendant insurance carrier wrongfully denied the plaintiff’s claim that the car was stolen. The value of the vehicle was stipulated to be $________. The person who was in possession of the decedent’s vehicle testified through deposition transcript that the decedent told him he could have the vehicle if anything ever happened to the decedent.After a four day trial, the jury found that there was a loss of the decedent’s vehicle due to theft and a verdict for the plaintiff was entered. The plaintiff was granted entitlement to statutory attorney fees in an amount to be determined.

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