United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
C. Carlson United States Magistrate Judge.
Statement of Facts and of The Case
case, which comes before us for consideration of two motions
to dismiss the bad faith claim set forth in the
plaintiffs' complaint, (Docs. 4 and 5),  involves a
dispute relating to a claim under an automobile insurance
policy and began its life as an action filed in state court
that was later removed to federal court. The plaintiffs'
initial complaint, which was filed in the Court of Common
Pleas of Lackawanna County, names American States Insurance
Company as the defendant and brings seven legal claims
against American States, including a claim of breach of an
insurance contract between the parties, (Doc. 2, Count 1),
and a companion claim of breach of a state statutory duty of
good faith in investigating and paying this insurance claim
in violation of 42 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 8371. (Doc. 2,
support of these legal claims, the plaintiff's complaint
contains a 26-paragraph factual recital. (Id.,
&& 1-26.) These well-pleaded allegations guide us in
assessing the legal sufficiency of the complaint, and allege
5. Defendant, AMERICAN, issued a policy of insurance No.
K2495825 to Plaintiffs, JOSEPH VADELLA and ANN VADELLA,
covering their two automobiles a 2011 GMC Sierra K1500
Pick-up truck and a 2011 BMW 525I. A copy of the policy is
attached hereto and marked as Exhibit “A”.
6. Defendant, AMERICAN, charged and collected a premium for
underinsured motorist coverage on said policy.
7. Plaintiffs, JOSEPH VADELLA and ANN VADELLA, paid all
premiums requested by Defendant, AMERICAN.
8. The same policy was in full force and effect on August 30,
9. On or about August 30, 2015, Plaintiff, JOSEPH VADELLA,
was involved in a motor vehicle crash which directly caused
him to sustain serious and severe life-threatening injuries
some of which are permanent.
10. On August 30, 2015, Plaintiff, JOSEPH VADELLA, was
insured for underinsured coverage in the amount of $250,
000.00, with stacking (two cars), by Defendant, AMERICAN,
under policy K2495828.
11. As a result of the collision, Plaintiff, JOSEPH VADELLA,
suffered severe and permanent injuries including, but not
limited to, the following:
(a) neck sprain with severe pain and injuries to his cervical
spine, more specifically identified as narrowing of disc
space at the C4-C5, C5-C6 and C6-C7 with anterior and
posterior osteophytes formation and narrowing of
intervertebral foramina at the corresponding bilaterally with
nerve root compression. Persistent multilevel degenerative
spondylosis, degenerative bilateral facet edema at the C7-T1,
bilateral foraminal stenosis at the C3-4, bilateral foraminal
stenosis at the C4-5 and C5-6, bilateral foraminal stenosis
with left foraminal disc protrusion at the C6-7, all of which
pain radiates into his upper extremities;
(b) low back pain and injuries to his lumbar spine including
degenerative disc disease with sharp shooting pain radiating
into his left lower extremity and sciatica pain;
(c) radiculopathy and nerve injuries to the C8-T1 area;
(d) muscle spasms throughout his cervical, thoracic and
(e) severe headaches;
(f) right hip pain;
(g) left ankle pain;
(h) right elbow pain;
(i) ongoing pain management, physical therapy and
(j) ongoing and persistent pain aggravated by standing,
sitting, walking, sexual activity, physical activities and
elevating his arms;
(k) sleep disruption.
12. Defendant, AMERICAN, was promptly notified of Plaintiff,
JOSEPH VADELLA's injuries.
13. As a result Defendant, AMERICAN, after and only after
litigation against its parent company Safeco Insurance was
initiated, began to pay and continues to pay medical ...