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Hagedorn v. MetLife

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

April 27, 2006

MAREANDER HAGEDORN, Plaintiff,
v.
METLIFE, a foreign insurance company, Defendant.

          ORDER

          Thomas S. Zilly United States District Judge.

         This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Mareander Hagedorn's (“Hagedorn”) motion for summary judgment against Intervenor Plaintiff Dixie Brewster (“Brewster”). Docket no. 17.[1] Hagedorn moves the Court to enter judgment that she is entitled to the proceeds of a $420, 000.00 life insurance policy owned by the decedent, Garrison Thomas (“Thomas”). Thomas died on April 7, 2004. Fricke Decl., docket no. 47, Ex. D (death certificate). From February 26, 2003, until the time of death, Thomas' employee life insurance policy designated Hagedorn as the named beneficiary of the policy.[2] Id., Ex. H.

         Hagedorn claims that, as the named beneficiary, she is presently entitled to the proceeds of the policy. Brewster, who is Thomas' mother and the previously named beneficiary of the policy, opposes the motion for summary judgment on the grounds that Hagedorn is precluded from benefitting from the policy because Hagedorn was “involved in” Thomas' death. Intervenor Pl.'s Opp., docket no. 44, at 1; Brewster Decl., docket no. 46, at 1. Brewster further contends that there is an issue of fact as to whether the beneficiary designation form relied upon by Hagedorn has been forged or altered. Id. Having reviewed all of the briefing and supporting declarations, the Court enters the following Order.

         Background

         Allegations that Hagedorn Caused Thomas' Death

         Hagedorn states plainly that she “in no way caused or contributed to [Garrison Thomas'] death.” Hagedorn Aff., docket no. 18, at 2. Hagedorn also states that Brewster's implications that she had something to do with Thomas' death are “false.” Id. In her deposition, Hagedorn describes finding Thomas as follows:

I was going to the gym to train a client, and on my way driving into town into the gym, I called [Thomas] at work to talk to him about a car rental and where he wanted me to meet him after work. And they told me he had not shown up for work. So I stopped by his house on the way to the gym.
. . .
I went in and his bedroom door was closed. I opened the bedroom door. I saw he was in bed.
. . .
It looked as if he was asleep.
. . .
He was sideways, lying on his side, as I recall. I believe he was on his - lying ...

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