United States District Court, W.D. Washington
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY
JUDGMENT AND GRANTING IN PART PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR
RICARDO S. MARTINEZ CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter comes before the Court on Defendant State Farm Mutual
Automobile Insurance Company (“State Farm”)'s
Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. #22), and Plaintiff Arika
Prince's Cross Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. #26).
For the reasons below, the Court GRANTS Plaintiff's
Motion and DENIES Defendant's Motion.
parties agree that there are no issues of material fact in
dispute. Dkt. #34 at 2. Plaintiff Arika Prince is an insured
under State Farm policy 0062-165-47J. Dkt. #3-2. She was
involved in a motor vehicle collision on September 11, 2011,
and made a claim with State Farm for underinsured motorist
benefits. Id. The parties were unable to resolve
this claim and Ms. Prince eventually filed suit in King
County Superior Court. On November 20, 2015, the state court
entered a jury verdict judgment in favor of Ms. Prince for
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (“UIM”) benefits
in the amount of $13, 947.07, bearing interest at the rate of
12% per year. Dkt. #24-6. On November 24, 2015, State Farm
issued a check for this amount payable to Arika Prince &
Clausen Law Firm. Dkt. #24-7. Ms. Prince returned this check
to State Farm's counsel in part because it did not
include interest. It was then returned to Ms. Prince for a
second time requesting that she explain the amount of
interest she believed was owed. Dkt. #23-2. Eventually this
check was cashed, representing satisfaction of the initial
$13, 947.07 judgment amount. Dkt. #24 at 3.
December 15, 2015, after awarding attorney fees and costs to
Prince, the state court entered an Amended Judgment against
State Farm in the amount of $113, 375.02, bearing interest at
the rate of 12% per year. Dkt. #27-4. State Farm did not
immediately tender payment of the remaining balance due,
which was $99, 427.95 plus interest. See Id.
Instead, State Farm appealed the original and amended
judgments. Dkts. #27-3 and #27-5.
Washington court rules, the amended judgment amount could be
enforced 14 days after entry-i.e., on December 30,
2015-in the absence of a stay. Wash. Super. Ct. Civ. R.
March 11, 2016, Ms. Prince obtained a writ of garnishment
against State Farm's bank to collect the unpaid amended
judgment amount. Dkt. #27-8. Ms. Prince incurred attorney
fees and costs in the amount of $359.42 to obtain this writ
of garnishment. Dkt. #27-9. Prior to this garnishment,
Plaintiff's counsel had never contacted State Farm's
counsel regarding payment of the outstanding judgment or her
intent to file for the garnishment writ. Dkt. #23 at 2.
Prince filed this action in King County Superior Court on
March 10, 2016, with claims for insurance bad faith and
violation of the Washington Consumer Protection Act
(“CPA”). Dkt. #3-1.
April 11, 2016, State Farm filed a supersedeas bond in the
amount of $120, 000, effectively securing the judgment and
staying enforcement. Dkt. #25-2.
April 15, 2016, Ms. Prince served an Amended Complaint adding
an IFCA claim. Dkt. #3-2. State Farm removed the case to this
Court on April 18, 2016. Dkt. #1.
October 24, 2016, the Washington State Court of Appeals
affirmed the state trial court's rulings. See
about February 3, 2017, State Farm paid the balance of the
Amended Judgment owed as well as interest and attorney fees
and costs. Dkt. #23 at 2. State Farm has not ...