The judge gives preliminary approval
By Mika Pangilinan
A federal judge in Georgia has given preliminary approval to an agreement that settles a class action lawsuit that accuses USAA of underpaying taxes on total claims. loss
About 9,000 policyholders joined the lawsuit, claiming they were not properly paid for title ad valorem tax (TAVT) under their USAA policies.
The judge also ordered USAA to pay nearly $573,000 in attorney fees.
The lawsuit was initiated by Jahazel Black, who argued in his 2021 complaint that USAA failed to fully cover the TVAT on his insured 2009 Honda Civic Sedan LXS totaled after an accident in October 2018.
USAA considered Black’s vehicle to have a base value of $5,291 and an adjusted value of $4,345. However, the insurer issued a final payment of $4,277 after accounting for various charges.
Black’s complaint alleges that the TAVT on his car amounted to 7% of its value, indicating that he received an additional $295.50 on top of the $49.25 reimbursed by USAA.
The lawsuit also claims that USAA failed to pay Black for license plate transfer fees, amounting to a minimum loss of $5.
It went on to allege that USAA violated its plaintiff policy and violated Georgia law by not fully covering the TAVT and license plate transfer fees on total loss claims.
Similar instances of underpayment were outlined by other plaintiffs in the class action suit.
A final hearing is scheduled for December 13, where the case is expected to be settled.
Last year, USAA was hit with a lawsuit by a policyholder in California over allegations that it charged excessive premiums over the past two years during pandemic-related lockouts.
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