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Hablir LLC v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lake Charles Division

July 29, 2019





         Before the Court is a "Motion to Dismiss by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company" (Doc. #15) wherein defendant, Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company (improperly named as "Nationwide Insurance Company" and hereinafter referred to as "Nationwide") moves under Rules 8 and 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure to dismiss all of Plaintiff s claims against Nationwide. The time for filing an opposition has lapsed and Plaintiff has not opposed the motion. For the reasons that follow, the motion will be granted.


         Plaintiff filed its Petition for Damages in the 14th Judicial District Court which was later removed to this Court. Plaintiff named three (3) defendants, Nationwide, Scottsdale Insurance Company and Louisiana Companies as its alleged insurers, . Plaintiff asserts that it maintained a policy of insurance with the named defendants which covered the business premises and personal property.

         On or about March 29, 2018, an accident occurred whereby two vehicles collided with the covered premises at 801 E. Prien Lake Rd. in Lake Charles, Louisiana which caused damage to an exterior wall of the covered building and left an additional covered property within the building at risk of loss.[1] Shortly thereafter, on April 14, 2019 while Plaintiffs claim remained in processing, rain entered through the damaged exterior of the covered premises, causing additional covered losses in the interior.[2] Defendants denied coverage for Plaintiffs alleged covered losses resulting in the instant lawsuit.

         RULE 12(b)(6) STANDARD

         "Under Federal rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2), a pleading must contain a 'short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937, (2009) quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.s. 544, 570, 127 S.Ct. 2955 (2007).

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) allows dismissal of a complaint when it fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. The test for determining the sufficiency of a complaint under Rule 12(b)(6) is that "'a complaint should not be dismissed for failure to state a claim unless it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle him to relief.'" Hitt v. City of Pasadena, 561 F.2d 606, 608 (5th Cir. 1977)(per curium) citing Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 45-46, 78 S.Ct. 99, (1957)).

         Subsumed within the rigorous standard of the Conley test is the requirement that the plaintiffs complaint be stated with enough clarity to enable a court or an opposing party to determine whether a claim is sufficiently alleged. Elliot v. Foufas, 867 F.2d 877, 880 (5th Cir. 1989). The plaintiffs complaint is to be construed in a light most favorable to plaintiff, and the allegations contained therein are to be taken as true. Oppenheimer v. Prudential Securities, Inc., 94 F.3d 189, 194 (5th Cir. 1996). In other words, a motion to dismiss an action for failure to state a claim "admits the facts alleged in the complaint, but challenges plaintiffs rights to relief based upon those facts." Tel-Phonic Servs., Inc. v. TBS Intl, Inc., 975 F.2d 1134, 1137 (5th Cir. 1992).

         "In order to avoid dismissal for failure to state a claim, a plaintiff must plead specific facts, not mere conclusory allegations...." Guidry v. Bank of LaPlace, 954 F.2d 278, 281 (5th Cir. 1992). "Legal conclusions masquerading as factual conclusions will not suffice to prevent a motion to dismiss." Blackburn v. City of Marshall, 42 F.3d 925, 931 (5th Cir. 1995)."[T]he complaint must contain either direct allegations on every material point necessary to sustain a recovery ... or contain allegations from which an inference fairly may be drawn that evidence on these material points will be introduced at trial." Campbell v. City of San Antonio, 43 F.3d 973, 975 (5th Cir. 1995).

         Under Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the pleading standard does not require a complaint to contain "detailed factual allegations," but it demands "more than an unadorned, the defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me accusation."2?e// Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.s. 544, 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (2007). A complaint that offers "labels and conclusions:" or "a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do." Id. Nor does a complaint suffice if it tenders "naked assertion[s]" devoid of "further factual enhancement."Jd, at 557, 127 S.Ct. 1955.

         To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to "state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'Ttf., at 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955.

         LAW ...

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