skip to main content

Kane Russell Coleman Logan Successfully Defends Insurance Broker in Fraud Claim Arising from $70 Million Life Insurance Policy

Larry Bowman and Don Waltz, attorneys in the Dallas office of Kane Russell Coleman Logan PC, successfully defended John P. Duvall, an insurance broker in a complex case involving allegations of fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. The trial court granted their Motion for Summary Judgement, which was later upheld on appeal.

The plaintiff in the case, Jon Jessen, purchased $70,000,000 worth of life insurance policies between May and September of 2008 from Duvall. Jessen was advised by his long-time tax attorney and financial advisor, Joseph Bond, that this would provide tax benefits and estate planning protections in the event of Jessen’s premature death. Jessen maintains that Bond told him the investments were a safe place to deposit substantial sums for a few years and that the policies could be sold for a profit on a secondary or “viatical” market.

The financial markets collapsed in September 2008, and Jessen lost more than $3,200,000 by the time the last policy was sold in late 2011. Jessen filed suit on September 30, 2013, against Bond and his law firm, every insurance company that sold the policies, as well as insurance agent Duvall, claiming a conspiracy was involved.

“The plaintiff took a calculated risk buying $70 million in life insurance as an investment,” said Larry Bowman, a director in the Dallas office of Kane Russell Coleman Logan. “When the risk didn’t pay off, he sued everyone in sight to try and recoup his losses, but that’s just not how it works. The court understood our client’s role in this; there was no fraud, and certainly no liability for the insured’s losses.”