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QUINTEN v. UNITED STATES STEEL CORP. (06/11/58)

June 11, 1958

QUINTEN
v.
UNITED STATES STEEL CORP., APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 69, April T., 1958, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Oct. T., 1956, No. 971, in case of Francis Quinten et al. v. United States Steel Corporation. Judgment affirmed.

COUNSEL

Gilbert J. Helwig, with him Reed, Smith, Shaw & McClay, for appellant.

Ella Graubart, with her Ruth Forsht, and Patterson, Crawford, Arensberg & Dunn, for appellees.

Before Hirt, Gunther, Wright, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ. (rhodes, P.j., and Woodside, J., absent).

Author: Gunther

[ 186 Pa. Super. Page 386]

OPINION BY GUNTHER J.

This appeal is by United States Steel Corporation from the refusal of the court below to grant motions for judgment n.o.v. and for a new trial after a directed verdict for plaintiffs in the amount of $4,927.50.

Emanuel Quinten was employed for many years by the defendant corporation. In 1935, the defendant inaugurated a group life insurance plan for its employees and a certificate of insurance was issued to him under the terms of the master policy, in which the insured designated his three children, plaintiffs, as beneficiaries. Contributions toward the premium were deducted from his pay for a period of fifteen years. The insured stopped working on January 11, 1950 because of mental illness and he was committed to Woodville State Hospital where he remained until his death on February 14, 1956.

From February, 1950 to July, 1950, the insured's premiums were paid by Francis Quinten, one of the plaintiffs, and thereafter, as a result of certain discussions in the office of industrial relations of the defendant, he requested that his father's vacation pay be applied toward the payment of premiums. Some time in the latter part of 1953, Francis Quinten moved to California where he continued to live down to the time of trial. From July, 1950 to February, 1952, defendant paid the premiums from the wages due to the insured, Emanuel Quinten. Thereafter, defendant terminated the employment and cancelled the policy.

When the father became mentally ill, Dolores Matvia, one of the children, moved into his home and remained there down to the date of trial. The other child, Walter Quinten, was a child 14 years of age when

[ 186 Pa. Super. Page 387]

    his father became ill. All of the children testified that they did not know that defendant intended to discontinue the policy and two of the children testified they knew nothing about the existence of said policy. No notice was given to anyone of the termination of employment or the cancellation of the insurance, and defendant knew that the insured had been committed to Woodville State Hospital.

On March 30, 1955, a guardian was appointed for Emanuel Quinten, who collected from the defendant the sum of $5,545.98, being the employee's pension and $157.13 in net wages. The guardian did not know of the ...


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