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Elansari v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co.

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

December 9, 2019



          JOSHUA D. WOLSON, J.

         Ayman Elansari brings this action against Liberty Mutual Insurance Company for allegedly failing to provide Mr. Elansari work loss benefits in accordance with his auto insurance policy. Because Liberty Mutual does not have an insurance policy or contract with Mr. Elansari, the Court grants Liberty Mutual's motion to dismiss with respect to each of Mr. Elansari's claims but affords Mr. Elansari the opportunity to refile his claims against the proper entity.


         Mr. Elansari, who worked full time as a driver, was involved in a vehicle accident in West Chester, Pennsylvania. For the policy year ending September 15, 2018, Mr. Elansari had an auto insurance policy that The First Liberty Insurance Corp. (“First Liberty”) had issued. Following the accident, Mr. Elansari was prescribed medication that caused drowsiness and included an instruction not to drive while on the medication. As a result, Mr. Elansari reduced his working hours from 40-60 hours per week to 20 hours per week.

         Mr. Elansari apparently filed an insurance claim with First Liberty, seeking coverage for his lost income. First Liberty had a physician examine Mr. Elansari, and that physician concluded that Mr. Elansari could return to work full time. On that basis, First Liberty denied Mr. Elansari's claim. Mr. Elansari contends that decision was erroneous and that he is entitled to work loss benefits under his insurance policy. On July 30, 2019, Mr. Elansari filed a Complaint against Liberty Mutual (ECF No. 1). In response, on August 23, 2019, Liberty Mutual filed a motion to dismiss (ECF No. 5).


         In ruling on a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, the Court must accept as true all well-pleaded allegations of fact in the plaintiff's complaint, and any reasonable inferences that may be drawn therefrom, and must determine whether “under any reasonable reading of the pleadings, the plaintiff may be entitled to relief.” Nami v. Fauver, 82 F.3d 63, 65 (3d Cir. 1996) (citations omitted). A document filed pro se is to be liberally construed, and a Court must “apply the applicable law, irrespective of whether the pro se litigant has mentioned it by name.” Dluhos v. Strasberg, 321 F.3d 365, 369 (3d Cir. 2003) (citation omitted). Accordingly, claims should be dismissed under Rule 12(b)(6) only if “it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle him to relief.” Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 45-46 (1957). That said, a court need not credit a complaint's “bald assertions” or “legal conclusions” when deciding a motion to dismiss. In re Burlington Coat Factory Securities Litigation, 114 F.3d 1410, 1429-30 (3d Cir. 1997) (citations omitted).

         III. ANALYSIS

         A. Improper Insurance Provider

         Mr. Elansari brings this action against Liberty Mutual for, among other things, breach of contract for violation of his insurance policy. As Liberty Mutual notes in its motion to dismiss, however, it does not appear that a contract or insurance policy existed between Mr. Elansari and Liberty Mutual at the time of the accident. While the Complaint does not include the insurance policy at issue, Liberty Mutual has attached it as Exhibit 1 in its motion to dismiss. This Court “may consider an undisputedly authentic document that a defendant attaches as an exhibit to a motion to dismiss… if that document is integral to or explicitly relied upon in the complaint.” Kortyna v. Lafayette Coll., 726 Fed.Appx. 934, 937 (3d Cir. 2018). Exhibit 1 is a LibertyGuard Auto Policy insurance, with policy number A06-288-377081-7078, issued by The First Liberty Insurance Corporate to Ayman T. Elansari. Accordingly, it appears Mr. Elansari has brought this action against the wrong entity. Therefore, the Court will dismiss Mr. Elansari's claims against Liberty Mutual without prejudice. Mr. Elansari may file an amended complaint if he decides he wants to proceed against First Liberty.

         B. Mr. Elansari's Claims

         Even if Mr. Elanasri had brought this action against First Liberty, his claims would likely still fail. Although it is not altogether clear what specific claims Mr. Elansari intended to plead in his Complaint, when construed liberally, the Court identifies four separate claims for 1) Breach of Contract; 2) Equitable Relief; 3) Bad Faith; and 4) Fraud.

         1. Breach of contract

         In his breach of contract claim, Mr. Elansari alleges that his auto insurance provider “renege[d] on its agreement” to pay him for lost income, resulting from his accident and subsequent medical complications. (ECF No. 1 ¶ 4.) Nevertheless, Mr. Elansari does not specify which provision in his policy his insurance provider breached, nor does he provide a specific date on which the accident occurred. Mr. Elansari's statement in his response brief that the “accident occurred sometime in the later months of 2018, ” does not clarify whether it happened before the policy terminated on September 15, 2018. (ECF No. 14 ¶ 3.) Accordingly, without ...

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