Court Grants Class Certification in State Farm Life Insurance Lawsuit

On September 20, 2021, United States District Court Judge Barbara J. Rothstein certified a class of “all persons who own or owned a universal life insurance policy issued by State Farm on Form 94030 in the State of Washington who se policy was in-force on or after January 1, 2002 and who was subject to at least one monthly deduction” for claims arising from allegations that State Farm made unauthorized monthly deductions from class member life insurance accounts.

Plaintiff has brought claims for breach of contract, conversion, violations of the Washington Consumer Protection Act, and for declaratory and injunctive relief. The Form 94030 Policy provides for deposits of paid premiums into an interest-bearing account. The Policy further provides that State Farm is authorized to make certain monthly deductions from the policyholders’ accounts, including a monthly cost of insurance rate based on the insured’s age, sex, and applicable rate class. Plaintiff contends that the Policy establishes the only factors that State Farm can use to determine the monthly cost of insurance deduction, and alleges that State Farm loads in additional, undisclosed profit factors.

The Court’s ruling certifying the class is a substantial victory and will allow a final adjudication, either following trial or settlement, on a classwide basis to move forward.

The case is Whitman v. State Farm Life Insurance Company, Case No. 3:19-cv-06025-BJR, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington. Tousley Brain Stephens PLLC, led by attorneys Kim Stephens and Rebecca Solomon, is one of several law firms that represent the plaintiff in the class action.

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