United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
DAVID FRANTZ, Individually and as Guardian and Parent of M.F., a Minor, Plaintiffs,
NATIONWIDE INSURANCE COMPANY, NATIONWIDE MUTUAL FIRE INSURANCE COMPANY, and NATIONWIDE INSURANCE, Defendants.
Richard Caputo United States District Judge
before me is the Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 2) filed by
Defendants Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Company,
Nationwide Insurance Company, and Nationwide Insurance
(collectively, “Nationwide” or
“Defendants”). Plaintiff David Frantz (“Mr.
Frantz”) commenced this action against Nationwide after
it denied coverage under a homeowners policy of insurance for
injuries sustained in an ATV accident by Mr. Frantz's
minor son M.F. Because Plaintiffs fail to state a claim upon
which relief can be granted, the motion to dismiss will be
granted, but Plaintiffs will be given leave to file an
facts as alleged in the Complaint are as follows:
about November 1, 2013, M.F. was operating an off road ATV on
his father's property at 974 Molasses Valley Road,
Kunkletown, Pennsylvania. (See Doc. 1-1, ¶ 5).
There is a local off road trail adjacent to this property.
(See id. at ¶ 6). M.F. attempted to access this
trail, but as he did, he was struck by a motor vehicle.
(See id.). M.F. was thrown from the ATV and suffered
severe and permanent injuries. (See id. at
time of the accident, Mr. Frantz had in effect a homeowners
insurance policy that was purchased from Nationwide for the
property at 974 Molasses Valley Road. (See id. at
¶¶ 3, 8). That policy provided coverage for
personal injury loss, property damage, and bodily injury up
to $300, 000.00. (See id. at ¶
At the time of his son's accident, Mr. Frantz and M.F.
resided at the insured property. (See id. at
¶¶ 1, 10).
the incident, Mr. Frantz notified Nationwide of his son's
injury and filed a claim. (See id. at ¶ 12). At
the time of the filing of the Complaint, though, Nationwide
had not investigated or otherwise responded to the claim.
(See id. at ¶ 13).
on the foregoing, Plaintiffs filed an action against
Nationwide in the Monroe County Court of Common Pleas.
(See Doc. 1-1, generally). Plaintiffs
assert claims against Nationwide for breach of contract
(Count I), negligent misrepresentation (Count II), unjust
enrichment (Count III), and statutory and common law bad
faith (Count IV). (See id.). Nationwide removed the
action to this Court on March 2, 2018, (see Doc. 1,
generally), and filed a motion to dismiss on March
8, 2018. (See Doc. 2, generally). The
motion to dismiss is now fully briefed and ripe for
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) provides for the dismissal
of a complaint, in whole or in part, for failure to state a
claim upon which relief can be granted. See Fed. R.
Civ. P. 12(b)(6). “Under the ‘notice
pleading' standard embodied in Rule 8 of the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure, a plaintiff must come forward with
‘a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief.'” Thompson
v. Real Estate Mortg. Network, 748 F.3d 142, 147 (3d
Cir. 2014) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)).
resolving a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, “a court must
consider no more than whether the complaint establishes
‘enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that
discovery will reveal evidence of the necessary elements'
of the cause of action.” Trzaska v. L'Oreal
USA, Inc., 865 F.3d 155, 162 (3d Cir. 2017) (quoting
Connelly v. Lane Constr. Corp., 809 F.3d 780, 789
(3d Cir. 2016)). In reviewing the sufficiency of a complaint,
a court must take three steps: (1) identify the elements of
the claim; (2) identify conclusions that are not entitled to
the assumption of truth; and (3) assume the veracity of the
well-pleaded factual allegations and determine whether they
plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief. See
Connelly, 809 F.3d at 787 (citations omitted). “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.'”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct.
1937, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 167 L.Ed.2d
motion to dismiss will be granted. First, Plaintiffs fail to
adequately plead a breach of contract cause of action action
in Count I of the Complaint. The elements necessary to plead
a breach of contract claim under Pennsylvania law are:
“(1) the existence of a contract, including its
essential terms[;] (2) a breach of the contract; and, (3)
resultant damages.” Meyer, Darragh, Buckler,
Bebenek & Eck, P.L.L.C. v. Law Firm of Malone Middleman,
P.C., 137 A.3d 1247, 1258 (Pa. 2016) (citing J.F.
Walker Co., Inc. v. Excalibur Oil Grp. Inc., 792 A.2d
1269, 1272 (Pa. Super. Ct. 2002)). Although not specifically
stated in the Complaint, Plaintiffs appear to claim that
Nationwide breached the terms of the insurance policy by
failing to provide personal liability and/or medical coverage
for the injuries sustained by M.F.
the terms of the policy and Endorsement H-6184, Coverage E,
personal liability, “does not apply to: . . . f)
bodily injury to you or an
insured as defined in Section II - Liability
definitions 5.a) and 5.b).” (See Doc. 2, Ex.
“2”, H3 and H-6184) (emphasis in original).
Insured, under Section II, is defined as
“you and the following persons if
residents of your household at the
residence premises: a) your
relatives; . . .” (Id. at ¶ 1) (emphasis
in original). Based on the facts as alleged in the Complaint,
Coverage E does not apply. Specifically, M.F. is alleged ...