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DIGEST OF DECISIONS,
IN INSURANCE CASES, RENDERED IN THE UNITED STATES SUPREME AND CIRCUIT COURTS, AND IN THE STATE
SUPREME COURTS, SINCE JANUARY 1, 1871.
From certified transcripts in our possession.
AGENCY. § 1. LIFE-Husband and Wife-Estoppel in pais.The husband took out a policy upon his life for the benefit of his wife, and payable to her, and gave his notes in payment of the premium. The notes and the policy each contained a condition that upon a failure in the payment of the notes, or any one of them, at maturity, the policy should become immediately void and the insurer should be released from all obligation under it. —Held that the policy was “a contract with the husband, and the terms and conditions to which he assented attach to and qualify the policy, and determine the liability of the insurers.”. Held, also, that if the policy is regarded as having been procured by the wife, as the result of an agreement made between her and the company, the husband “was the actor in the transaction and represented the plaintiff, and claiming the benefit of his acts and of the policy procured by his agency; she necessarily ratifies and affirms the contract as it was made, with all its terms and conditions;' and Held, also, that there is no question of estoppel in pais in the case. There can be no estoppel in behalf of one having full knowledge of all the facts, and “as the payment of the premium by a note, with conditions affecting the policy, instead of in cash, was the act of the plaintiff's agent, and as the principal is chargable with knowledge of the act of the agent, and notice to the agent is notice to the principal, it .follows that the defendants are not estopped from alleging the truth of the transaction against the plaintiff.”
Dunlap's Paley on Agency, 261; Hutchins vs. Hubbard, 34 N. Y., 24; Lawrence vs. Selden, 1 Selden, 401; Plumb vs. Cattaraugus Ins. Co., 18 N. Y., 394; Story on Agency, & 140; Dezell vs. Odell, 3 Hill, 219.
Reynolds vs. Lounsbury, 6 Hill, 534; Andrews vs. Lyons, 11 Allen, 349; Howard vs. Hudson, 2 El. and Bl., 10; Dewey vs. Field, 4 Met., 381; Pitt vs. Berkshire Life Ins. Co., 100 Mass., 500.
Baker vs. The Unio utual Life Ins. Co.*
N. Y. C. A.
§ 2. LIFE-Responsibility of Company for acts of Notice to.—Dr. Sprague, the physician of the person on whose life the policy was issued, in answer to the question in the application, taken by Case, the company's agent, “Is he sober and temperate ?” said “Cannot say.” Rogers, his friend, in answer to the question, “Are his habits of life temperate?” said “I think so;” but told Case that he had been intemperate in past years. Case informed Thornton, another agent of the company, who had sent him to make the inquiries, “that Mr. Miller was not insurable on account of Mr. Rogers' statement that he had not always been temperate, and that Mr. Rogers had not filled the blank in answer to the question “Has he always been temperate ?" Thornton, then, in answer to this question to Rogers, which had been left blank by request of Case, wrote the answer, “So far as I know ;” and also wrote the same answer to the same question which Dr. Sprague had left unanswered. Case also, in answer to the question in the application, “ Do you consider him, from the information you have, a tit person to be insured, and do you recommend him to the directors as such,” wrote “Yes." The person, on whose life the policy was issued, had for many years prior to the date of the policy been a man of very intemperate habits, and the evidence tended to show that his death was occasioned by the use of intoxicating liquors.-Held that "an insurance company transacting business through an agent having authority to solicit, make out and forward applications for insurance, to deliver over policies when returned, and to collect and transmit premiums, is affected by the knowledge acquired by such agent when engaged in procuring an application, and bound by his acts at such time done with respect thereto," and that “the court did not err in instructing the jury that the defendant was bound by notice communicated to its agents.”
* Decision Rendered January 24th. To appear in 43 N. Y.
Vose vs. Eagle Life and Health Ins. Co., 6 Cush., 42; Smith vs. Ins. Co., 24 Pa. St., 320; Mitchell, et al, vs. Lycoming Mut. Ins. Co., 51 Pa. St., 402; Lowell vs. Middlesex Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 8 Cush., 127; Forbes v8. Agawam Ins. Co., 9 id., 470; Lee vs. Howard Ins. Co., 3 Gray, 583.
Rowley vs. Empire Ins. Co., 36 N. Y., 550; Masters vs. Madison Co. Mut. Ins. Co., 11 Barb., 624; Sepson vs. Montgomery Co. Mut. Ins. Co., 9 Barb., 191; McEwan vs. Montgomery Co. Mut. Ins. Co., 5 Hill, 101; Anson vs. The Winnesheik Ins. Co., 23 Iowa, 84.
Miller vs. The Mutual Benefit Life Ins. Co.*
IOWA S. C.
$ 3. FIRE-Authority of — Waiver.---Richmond insured as owner, the loss, if any, payable to the plaintiff and Wylie, mortgagees, who, before the renewal, had purchased at foreclosure sale under the mortgage. “The renewal receipt ran to Richmond, showing the premium to have been received of him per Wylie, thus continuing the policy in the same form.”' The policy contained the condition that “if the property be sold or transferred, or any change take place in title or possession, whether by legal process or judicial decree, or voluntary transfer or conveyance
then this policy shall be void.” The local agent of the company, “duly authorized to issue and renew policies of insurance, and to receive the premium
* Decision Rendered April 5th. To appear in 29th Iowa.
therefor,” received the premium and made and delivered the renewal receipt, and knew at the time that the legal title to the property had passed from Richmond to the plaintiff. Held “that it was competent for the agent in this case to waive the condition that any change in title or possession shall render the policy void.”'
Viole vs. Germania Ins. Co., 26 Iowa, 9; Franklin v8. The Atlantic Fire Ins. Co., 42 Mo., 456; Columbia Ins. Co. v8. Cooper, 50 Pa. St. R., 331 ; N. E. F. & M. Ins. Co. vs. Schettler, 38 Ill., 166; Peoria M, & F. Ins. Co. vs. Hall, 12 Mich., 202; Clark vs. Union Mut. Ins. Co., 40 N. H., 333; Masters vs. Madison County Mut. Ins. Co., 11 Barb., 624; Rowley vs. The Empire Ins. Co., 36 N. Y., 550 ; Protection Ins. Co. vs. Harmer, 3 Ohio St., 452; Beal v8. The Park Fire Ins. Co., 16 Wis., 241 ; Hough vs. City Fire Ins. Co., 29 Conn., 10; Kelly vs. Troy Fire Ins. Co., 3 Wis., 268-269; Howard Fire Ins. Co. vs. Bruner, 23 Pa. St., 50; Ames vs. N. Y. Union Ins. Co., 14 N. Y., 253; Plumb v8. Cataraugus Ins. Co., 18 N. Y., 392; May 08. Buckeye Mut. Ins. Co., 25 Wis., 291 ; Wing vs. Harvey, 27 Eng. Law and Eq. R., 140; North Berwick Co. vs. N. E. F. & M. Ins. Co., 52 Me., 336; Keeler vs. Niagara Fire Ins. Co., 16 Wis., 523 ; Borhen vs. Williamsburg Ins. Co., 35 N. Y., 131; Sheldon vs. The Atlantic F. & M. Ins. Co., 26 N. Y., 460; Gait vs. National Protection Ins. Co., 25 Barb., 189; Post vs. Ætna Ins. Co., 43 Barb., 351 ; Warner vs. Peoria M. & F. Ins. Co., 14 Wis., 318; Gloucester Manf'g Co. vs. Howard Fire Ins. Co., 5 Gray, 497,
And “that the condition in question was waived when the agent accepted the premium and issued the renewal receipt, knowing the change of title which had been made, and that as such change did not affect the insurable interest of the parties for whose benefit the policy was issued, and who paid the premium, the recovery in this action must be affirmed.”
Peoria M. & F. Ins. Co. V8. Hall, 12 Mich., 214; Campbell vs. The Merchant's & Farmer's M. and F. Ins. Co., 37 N. H., 35; Martin vs. Madison County Mut. Ins. Co., 11 Barb. 624; Marshall vs. The Columbia Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 7 Foster, 157; 37 N. Y., 48.
Miner vs. The Phænix Ins. Co. *
WIS. S. C.
§ 4. FIRE-Rights of.—“Ferris, the grantee of the premises, and owner of the equity of redemption, can, as the representative and equitable assignee of Allen, claim no greater rights under the policies than his grantor and assignee, Allen, could have claimed.”
* Decision Rendered May 8th. To appear in 26 Wis.
Grosvenor vs. Atlantic Fire Ins. Co., 17 N. Y., 391.
N. Y. C. A.
ASSIGNMENT. $ 5.
FIRE-Policy.—Where the defendants issued a policy of insurance against fire on premises, the policy containing the following conditions: “Policies of insurance subscribed by this company shall not be assignable without the consent of the company expressed thereon. In case of assignment without consent, whether of the whole or of any interest in it, the liability of the company by virtue of such policy shall thenceforth cease,' and plaintiff assigned the policy as collateral security for money loaned him, without the assignment being submitted to or approved by the company, and afterwards, before the loss, paid the next annual premium, the plaintiff cannot recover. " This condition is a perfectly legal one."
Smith vs. Saratoga County Mutual Fire Insurance Company, 1 Hill, 497; do. vs. do. 3 Hill, 508; 1 Phillips on Insurance, 477 ; Angell on Fire and Life Insurance, 249, 251 ;
Ferree v8. the Oxford Fire and Life Ins. Annuity and Trust Company. †
PExx. S. C.
§ 6. LIFE- Married Woman.—“If the policy was a chose in action or an equitable interest, absolutely belonging to the wife," her consent, during coverture, to the assignment, is not an act obligatory upon her.
2 Story Eq. Juris., & 1413; Wood vs. Simmons, 20 Mo., 363; Craf vs. Bolton, 31 Mo., 355.
Thc Charter Oak Life Ins. Co. vs. Brant. I
Mo. S. C.
* Decision Rendered January 21th. To appear in 43 N. Y. * Decision Rendered February 20th. To appear in 65 Pa. Decision Rendered March 27th. To appear in 17 Mo.