Pretzel & Stouffer

Pretzel & Stouffer Team Secures Victory for Insurer Client in Potential Class-Action Suit

Partners Robert Chemers and Richard Waris, assisted by associates Richard Burgland and Donald Patrick Eckler, recently obtained summary judgment for an insurer client in a potential class-action lawsuit less than three months after receiving the case.

The plaintiff filed an underinsured motorist claim in Kane County against an insurer and tried to certify other policyholders across the country for a class-action suit against the insurer. The plaintiff claimed that the insurer was required to arbitrate his underinsured motorist claim and that the insurer’s refusal to do so was “vexatious and unreasonable.”

Before Pretzel & Stouffer became involved, the trial court had ordered the insurer three times to respond to an onerous class-wide discovery that included policies issued during a 10-year period. After receiving the case, Pretzel & Stouffer filed a motion to stay the discovery and a motion for summary judgment. The trial court agreed with Pretzel & Stouffer’s arguments, awarded summary judgment to the insurer and dismissed the putative class, turning a potentially time-consuming and expensive lawsuit into a complete victory for the firm’s client.

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