A “What Happened” Case

Attention residents of Grand Prairie, Arlington, Fort Worth, Dallas, Weatherford, and everywhere else in Texas. Sometimes there is a case that makes you ask, “What happened”.
A case that was decided in by the Court of Appeals of Texas, Houston (14th Dist.), on March 30, 2010, makes you ask, “What happened?” This case decision was written by Justice, Jefferey V. Brown, and is styled, Joe M. Garza, Pay Phone Owners Legal Fund, LLC, and Ernest Bustos v. Terra Nova Insurance Company, LTD., Guaranty National Insurance Company, The Burlington Insurance Company, and United National Insurance Company.
In this case, Joe M. Garza, Pay Phone Owners Legal Fund, LLC, and Ernest Bustos purchased pay telephones from American Telecommunications Company, Inc. (ATC). When buying the telephones, ATC allegedly represented that it would buy back the phones after 36 months or at a reduced price before 36 months if the phones were unsatisfactory. ATC also allegedly represented that it had insured the value of the phones if it was unable to repurchase them. ATC allegedly marketed that Northern & Western Insurance Company would provide primary insurance for its “buy back program,” and would provide excess insurance for the program. When requests were submitted for ATC to buy back the phones, ATC did not honor the requests. When the plaintiffs tried to collect on the insurance policies the claims were denied.
These insurance companies that denied the claim were Terra Nova Insurance Company, LTD., Guaranty National Insurance Company, The Burlington Insurance Company, and United National Insurance Company. The cited reasons for denial were that the policies only covered losses for bodily injury and property damages.
The insurance companies filed motions with the Court to; 1) have the case transfered to another Court, and 2) to have the case dismissed. The plaintiffs through their attorneys, did not file any paperwork in response to these motions. Thus, the Court examined what was before them and ruled in favor of the insurance companies, ultimately dismissing the case.
The question again is “What happened?”. Without getting the attorneys for the plaintiffs to talk or the plaintiffs themselves to talk, there is no sure way of knowing. The attorneys could not talk without their clients permission otherwise they would be violating the attorney client priviledge. One can only speculate, but it may be that the plaintiffs decided with their attorneys, that the case was not a good one and that it was best to go ahead and let the case be dismissed. If this were the case then the lawsuit probably should not have been filed in the first place. Or it may be that they did not know how good the case may or may not have been until after the lawsuit was filed. One thing for sure is that the case does make you wonder and ask; What happened?”