United States District Court, D. Connecticut
RULING ON MOTION TO DISMISS
MICHAEL P. SHEA, U.S.D.J.
Dominic Manseau and Carol Manseau (collectively,
“Plaintiffs”) filed this action in state court
against their homeowner's insurance provider, Allstate
Insurance Company (“Allstate”), for failure to
pay for damages to the basement walls of their home caused by
cracking concrete. (ECF No. 1.) Allstate removed the case to
this court on July 22, 2016. (ECF No. 1.) Plaintiffs bring
claims of breach of contract (Count One), breach of the
implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing (Count Two),
and unfair and deceptive practices in violation of the
Connecticut Unfair Insurance Practices Act, Conn. Gen. Stat.
§ 38a-816 et seq. (“CUIPA”) and the
Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act, Conn. Gen. Stat.
§ 42-110a et seq. (“CUTPA”) (Count
Three). On October 24, 2016, Allstate moved to dismiss the
breach of contract claim on the grounds that the insurance
policy at issue did not cover the alleged damage, and the
remaining claims because they cannot be maintained in the
absence of a breach of contract claim, or, in the
alternative, for failure to state claims on which relief can
be granted. (ECF No. 19.) For the reasons set forth below,
the motion to dismiss is GRANTED.
to the allegations in the complaint, Allstate has insured
Plaintiffs' home in Ellington, Connecticut at all
relevant times. (ECF No. 1 ¶ 3.) Plaintiffs have made
all required insurance payments. (Id. ¶ 4.)
” Plaintiffs “observed visible cracking patterns
in the basement walls of their home.” (Id.
¶ 5.) On or about January 5, 2016, a structural engineer
inspected their home, and concluded that “the concrete
deterioration and cracking were caused by a chemical reaction
in the concrete, and that this chemical reaction would
continue to progressively deteriorate the basement walls,
rendering the structure unstable . . . .” (Id.
¶¶ 6-7.) The engineer recommended that the basement
walls be replaced. (Id. ¶ 7.)
about January 15, 2016, Plaintiffs made a claim for coverage
under their homeowner's insurance policy, including the
engineer's report with their claim. (Id. ¶
8.) Allstate denied their claim on June 7, 2016.
(Id. ¶ 11.) In its denial letter Allstate
Allstate's investigation has determined that the cracking
of foundation walls at your property is a condition caused by
the expansion of reactive pyrrhotite in the concrete. The
pyrrhotite has been present since the concrete was originally
poured. When exposed to water and air, including ground
water, the pyrrhotite expands, causing the concrete to
develop cracks that gradually grow larger and more extensive.
Our investigation has determined that one or more of the
above-referenced Policy exclusions are applicable to your
(ECF No. 22 at 3.)
Homeowner's Policy (“Policy”) has three
“Sections.” (ECF No. 19-4 at 14.) “Section I
- Your Property, ” which addresses property coverage,
contains the following subsections: “Coverage A
Dwelling Protection, ” “Coverage B Other
Structures Protection, ” “Coverage C Personal
Property Protection, ” “Additional Protection,
” and “Section I- Conditions.”
Under “Section I - Your Property, ” the Policy
Losses We Cover Under Coverages A and B: We will
cover sudden and accidental direct physical loss to property
as described in Coverage A-Dwelling Protection and Coverage
B-Other Structures Protection except as limited or excluded
in this policy.
(Id. at 19.) The Policy continues:
Losses We Do Not Cover Under Coverages A and B: We
do not cover loss to the property described in Coverage
A-Dwelling Protection or Coverage B-Other Structures
Protection consisting of or caused by: . . . .
12. Collapse, except as specifically provided in Section
I-Additional Protection, under item 11,
“Collapse.” . . .
In addition, we do not cover loss consisting of or caused by
any of the following: 15. a) wear and tear, aging, marring,
scratching, deterioration, inherent vice, or latent defect; .
d) rust or other corrosion, mold, wet or dry rot; . . .
The “Additional Protection” portion of Section I
11. Collapse We will cover:
(a) the entire collapse of a covered building structure;
g) settling, cracking, shrinking, bulging or expansion of
pavements, patios, foundations, walls, floors, roofs ...