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Judge Sides with Gunder, Overrules Progressive's Motion to Dismiss

Order Reprints

March 2, 2015—A Florida judge recently ruled in favor of shop owner Ray Gunder, overruling a motion to dismiss filed by Progressive Casualty Insurance Company in a lawsuit Gunder filed on behalf of a customer.

On Feb. 23, Judge Susan B. Flood of the County Court of the Tenth Judicial Circuit in and for Polk County, denied Progressive’s motion to dismiss the complaint and strike claim for attorney’s fees. Furthermore, the court denied Progressive’s motion and defeated the insurer’s efforts to invoke the Appraisal Clause as provided for in their policy contract.

The lawsuit was filed by Gunder, owner of Gunder’s Auto Center in Lakeland, Fla., acting on behalf of his customer. The suit accuses Progressive of failing to pay for the reasonable and necessary costs to perform repairs to Gunder’s customer’s damaged vehicle.

“This ruling is huge as it allows us to proceed with the multiple lawsuits we currently have in process on behalf of other customers who have been shortchanged by this insurer as well as other insurers who have underpaid their policyholders,” Gunder said in a release.

The lawsuits seek full payment of the underpayments, plus costs, expenses, attorney fees, prejudgment and postjudgment interest.

Gunder has also settled a lawsuit against State Farm Insurance, and has set a precedent for pursuing legal action against insurance companies on behalf of his business and customers.

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