United States District Court, C.D. California
RICHARD G. PEOPLES
ALLSTATE INSURANCE COMPANY ET AL.
Present: The Honorable CHRISTINA A. SNYDER.
CIVIL MINUTES - GENERAL
PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO STRIKE DEFENDANTS' AFFIRMATIVE
DEFENSES OF UNILATERAL MISTAKE OF FACT AND FRAUD (dkt. 17,
filed October 10, 2017)
August 2, 2017, plaintiff Richard Peoples filed the complaint
herein against defendants Allstate Insurance Company and
Allstate Northbrook Indemnity Company (collectively,
“Allstate”). Dkt. 1 (“Compl.”).
Plaintiff asserts a claim for breach of contract against
Allstate. Id. The gravamen of plaintiff's
complaint is that Allstate refused to honor a settlement
agreement in which it voluntarily agreed to pay its policy
limits of $250, 000 for plaintiff's wrongful death claim
following the death of his wife, Jeanette Peoples. On August
29, 2017, Allstate filed an answer to the Complaint. Dkt. 10
October 10, 2017, plaintiff filed a motion to strike
Allstate's affirmative defenses of (1) unilateral mistake
of fact and (2) fraud. Dkt. 17 (“Motion”). On
October 30, 2017, Allstate filed its opposition. Dkt. 20
(“Opp'n”). On November 6, 2017, plaintiff
filed his reply, dkt. 25 (“Reply”), and submitted
objections to Allstate's opposition, dkt. 26.
carefully considered the parties' arguments, the Court
finds and concludes as follows.
alleges the following facts.
is a resident of Santa Clarita, California. Compl. ¶ 2.
Allstate Insurance Company is an Illinois corporation with
its principal place of business in Northbrook, Illinois.
Id. ¶ 3. Allstate Northbrook Indemnity Company
is an Illinois corporation with its principal place of
business in Northbrook, Illinois. Id. ¶ 4.
Defendants are registered with the California Secretary of
State. Id. Plaintiff asserts that subject matter
jurisdiction is appropriate pursuant to 28. U.S.C. section
1332 because there is complete diversity between the parties
and the amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000. Id.
alleges that Allstate issued an automobile liability
insurance policy to Janet Vartanians, bearing policy number
934059141, with policy limits of $250, 000 per person (the
“Policy”). Id. ¶ 6. The Policy
provided automobile liability insurance coverage to
Vartanians' 2014 Honda Accord automobile (the
“Honda”). Id. The Policy was in full
force and effect on March 7, 2016. Id. ¶ 7.
March 7, 2016, Eric Heydari was operating the Honda with the
permission and consent of Vartanians. Id. ¶ 8.
Plaintiff alleges that Heydari negligently struck and killed
Jeanette Ann Peoples, who was a pedestrian. Id.
Jeanette Peoples was plaintiff's wife. Id.
the death of Jeanette Peoples, plaintiff alleges that he made
a claim against Allstate. Id. ¶ 9. Allstate
opened Claim Number 0404627440. Id. On May 25, 2016,
Allstate's claims adjuster, Andy Weber, emailed
This email shall serve as written confirmation that we are
extending a $250, 000 policy limits settlement offer in order
to compensate you for the fatal injuries suffered by Jeanette
Peoples. I will be sending out a release form for you to sign
and return. We will need to protect any outstanding Medicare
lien. I will also have a structured ...