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State Farm must pay Fishers contractor $14.5M, court rules

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a $14.5 million award of damages against State Farm Insurance to a Fishers-based construction firm.

The award is one of the largest defamation awards in U.S. history, according to the court.

Joseph Radcliff and his company, Coastal Property Management LLC, were awarded the damages by a jury in mid-2011after a six-week trial in Hamilton County.

Bloomington, Ill.-based State Farm initially sued Radcliff and his company, which does business as CPM Construction of Indiana, in 2008, accusing him of racketeering and insurance fraud. The court found the suits were initiated after State Farm received bad press for denying homeowners’ claims for hail damage following a spring storm in central Indiana in 2006. Radcliff helped homeowners fight State Farm for coverage.

Radcliff filed a counterclaim, alleging defamation against the insurer.

The appeals court found the insurer couldn’t prove three arguments it made in an attempt to reverse the judgment.

State Farm claimed that its communications with the National Insurance Crime Bureau and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department – which investigated claims made by State Farm against Radcliff that he created damage on customers’ roofs – were protected by statutory immunity and a common-law privilege for crime reporting; that Radcliff failed to prove actual malice by clear and convincing evidence; and that the damages award was excessive.

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  • Time to rename the company
    I bet State Farm will say they are dissapointed just like they did in their loss in Mississippi 2 days ago when a jury found State Farm committed fraud. Interesting that State Farm was claiming fraud in this case and lost, but got caught for fraud in Mississippi. Maybe they should change their name to STATE FRAUD as it seems to fit. This is just the tip of the iceberg for the executives of this company.
  • State Farm
    Look what they did to the good people of LA, MISS after Katrina. Same thing. A good neighbor...really????
  • Good Grief...
    Where was this company when I was unsuccessfully fighting State Farm for that same hail damage? They finally conceded and replaces ONE-QUARTER of my roof. WHAT??? Yes, one-quarter of the roof, I had to pay thousands to have the rest redone on my own...
  • Hey, Aaron Rogers!
    What happened to my "discount double check". everyone sing along..."like a good neighbor"
  • rates
    good for him .....although I suppose State Farm is going to up our rates AGAIN to recoup this

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now

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