United States District Court, D. Connecticut
GLENN R. CARLSON, and NANCY E. CARLSON, Plaintiffs,
ALLSTATE INSURANCE COMPANY. Defendant.
RULING ON MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
MICHAEL P. SHEA, U.S.D.J.
Glenn R. Carlson and Nancy E. Carlson (collectively,
“the Carlsons” or “Plaintiffs”) filed
this action against their homeowner's insurance provider,
Allstate Insurance Company (“Allstate”), for
failure to pay for damages to their home caused by cracking
concrete. Plaintiffs filed their complaint on July 8, 2015,
bringing claims of breach of contract (Count One) and breach
of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing (Count
Two). (ECF No. 1.) On July 9, 2015, Plaintiffs added a claim
for 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). (ECF No. 7.)
December 15, 2016, Allstate moved for summary judgment with
respect to the breach of contract claim on the grounds that
the insurance policy at issue did not cover the alleged
damage. (ECF No. 37.) Allstate also moved for summary
judgment with respect to the remaining claims on the grounds
that those claims cannot be maintained in the absence of a
breach of contract claim, or, in the alternative, on the
grounds that the undisputed facts do not support a claim that
Allstate acted in bad faith or engaged in unfair practices in
connection with the Carlsons' insurance claim.
(Id.) For the reasons set forth below, the motion is
following facts, which are taken from the parties' Local
Rule 56(a) Statements and the exhibits, are undisputed unless
Carlsons have lived in the property located at 399 North
Road, Ashford Connecticut (“the Property”) since
1991. (ECF No. 42 ¶ 1.) Allstate has insured the
Property under separate insurance policies (“the
Policies”), each effective for a one-year term, since
May 30, 1991, and continuing through July 30, 2016.
(Id. ¶ 2.)
Carlsons noticed cracking in their foundation walls beginning
in approximately 2011 or 2012. (Id. ¶ 3; ECF
No. 38-4 at 10.) In the fall of 2014, after hearing rumors
about issues with concrete in the area, Mr. Carlson asked
Irwin “Jake” Stevenson, a neighbor and the
contractor who had installed the Carlson's foundation, to
inspect the foundation walls. (Id. ¶ 4; ECF No.
38-4 at 11-12.) After inspecting the foundation walls,
Stevenson told Ms. Carlson that there was a problem with the
concrete. (ECF No. 42 ¶ 4) In mid-September 2014, the
Carlsons hired an engineer, Silva, to inspect the foundation.
(Id.) Silva inspected the foundation and issued a
report, dated November 17, 2014, identifying “varying
levels of gypsum chalking, map cracking, and concrete surface
discoloration” in the foundation walls. (Id.
March 31, 2015, the Carlsons submitted a claim for coverage
for the damage to the concrete basement walls of their home.
(Id. ¶ 6.) On April 10, 2015, an Allstate
claims representative conducted an initial inspection of the
Property. (Id. ¶ 7.) On April 27, 2015, an
engineer retained by Allstate inspected the Property and
drilled core samples from the Carlsons' foundation walls
for analysis. (Id.) Allstate denied the
Carlsons' claim by letter dated June 19, 2015.
(Id. ¶ 8.)
Carlsons' Policies state, in relevant part:
Losses We Cover Under Coverages A and B:
We will cover sudden and accidental direct physical loss to
property described in Coverage A - Dwelling Protection and
Coverage B - Other Structures Protection except as limited or
excluded in this policy.
(ECF No. 38-1 at 11.)
Under, “Losses We Do Not Cover Under Coverages A and B,
” the Policies provide:
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:
4. Water or any other substance on or below the surface of
the ground, regardless of its source. This includes water or
any other substance which exerts pressure on, or flows, seeps
or leaks through any part of the residence premises. . . .
12. Collapse, except as specifically provided in Section I -
Additional Protection under item 11,
. . .
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
. . .
g) settling, cracking, shrinking, bulging or expansion of
pavements, patios, foundations, walls, floors, roofs or
. . .
22. Planning, Construction or Maintenance, meaning faulty,
inadequate or defective:
. . .
b) design, specifications, workmanship, repair, construction,
renovation, remodeling, grading, compaction;
c) materials used in repair, construction, renovation or
d) maintenance; of property whether on or off the residence
premises by any person or organization.
(ECF No. 42 ¶¶ 9-10, 13; ECF No. 38-1 at
Under the section titled, “Section I - Additional
Protection, ” the Policies provide:
We will ...