The N.J.?Appellate Division in?the case,?Those Certain Underwriters at Lloyd?s, Subscribing to Policy Number BUYXXXX?v. Cleopatra, LLC,?Docket No. A-1312-12T3?(App. Div.?Nov 20, 2013) affirmed a Cape MayCounty?trial court?s?order voiding a Lloyd?s policy from inception.? Both the trial court and the appellate court found that the?insured misrepresented?its?loss history?when completing?its insurance application. The courts also?dismissed?the insured?s counter-claims?alleging breach of contract and bad faith. ?Significantly, the Appellate Division?also ruled that the case should be sent back to the trial court to determine whether the insured violated the Insurance Fraud Prevention Act (IFPA), which would then entitle Lloyd?s to recover its costs and attorneys fees, as well as treble damages if ?a pattern of fraud? was established.
The case was handled by Powell & Roman?s managing partner, Joseph M. Powell.? It involved a considerable amount of lengthy discovery initiated by the insured?s attorney. As is apparent in the appellate court?s decision, Lloyd?s had made several attempts to reach an amicable settlement, but the case was hotly contested by the insured?s attorney at all stages. The trial and appellate court decisions were a welcome validation our position in this hard fought battle.