Claims Denial Attorney And Suing Insurance Agents

Insurance agents can be responsible for their own actions under the Texas Insurance Code.

Just as an insurance company is liable for its own misconduct, so too agents may be personally liable for their misdeeds, even when acting on behalf of an insurance company.  In general, an agent is individually liable for his or her own tort or statutory violation.  This is discussed in the 1985, Texas Supreme Court opinion, Weitzel v. Barnes, and in the 1983, Texas Supreme Court opinion, Light v. Wilson, and the 1991, Austin Court of Appeals opinion, State Farm Fire & Casualty v. Gros.

It is not normal for the agent to be liable for breach of contract based on the insurance policy, because the contract of insurance is not between the insured and the agent.

The Texas Supreme Court, in the 1994, opinion styled, Natividad v. Alexsis, Inc., held that an agent may not be liable for breaching a duty of good faith and fair dealing, because that duty arises from the contract between the insurer and the insured.

An agent may be liable for violating other common-law or statutory duties to the insured,  For example, in the 1987, San Antonio Court of Appeals opinion styled, Rainey-Maples v. Queen Charters, Inc., the Court found where an agent who undertakes to get insurance may be liable for negligently failing to get proper insurance for the insured.  And, as in the 1985, Texas Supreme Court opinion styled, Kitching v. Zamora, an agent may also be liable for negligently failing to notify the insureds that their policy is about to expire.

Pursuant to Texas Insurance Code, Sections 541.002(2), 541.151, 544.051(6) and 544.052, misrepresentations, unfair settlement practices, and unfair discrimination apply to “any person” engaged in the business of insurance and include agents and brokers.

When an agent has committed a wrong they can be personally liable for that wrong.

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