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North American Company for Life and Health Insurance v. Goglia

United States District Court, D. Massachusetts

October 2, 2019

NORTH AMERICAN COMPANY FOR LIFE AND HEALTH INSURANCE, Plaintiff,
v.
KAREN M. GOGLIA, LYNN A. LEONARD AS PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE OF THE ESTATE OF RONALD A. GOGLIA, STACIE A. GOGLIA CONSTAS, AND THE UNKNOWN TRUSTEE OF THE SAG INSURANCE TRUST, Defendants.

          Sara G. Janes, Esq., Chittenden, Murday & Novotny, LLC, J. Christopher Collins, Esq., Patrick M. Winn, Esq., Mirick, O'Connell, DeMallie & Lougee, LLP Attorneys for North American Company for Life and Health Insurance Revised Proposed Order Assented to by:

          Lynn A. Leonard, Esq., Attorney for Defendant Karen M. Goglia and Personal Representative of the Estate of Ronald A. Goglia

          [REVISED PROPOSED] ORDER

         This cause coming before the Court on Plaintiff, North American Company for Life and Health Insurance's ("NACOLAH") Motion for Judgment on its Complaint for Interpleader Against Defendants Karen M. Goglia and Lynn A. Leonard as Personal Representative of the Estate of Ronald A. Goglia and for Default Judgment Against Defendants Stacie A. Goglia Constas and the Unknown Trustee of the SAG Insurance Trust, and on the Motion of Defendant Karen M. Goglia for Default Judgment, the Court hereby finds that:

1. On March 14, 2019, NACOLAH filed its Complaint for Interpleader pursuant Federal Interpleader Act, 28 U.S.C. §§ 1335, 1397, 2361, and under Rule 22 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Fed.R.Civ.P. 22, to resolve competing claims to 20% of the death benefit proceeds payable under life insurance Policy Nos. LE00003720 and LO11973990 (collectively, "the Policies") issued by NACOLAH. (Compl. ¶¶ 10-11). This Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of this cause and over the parties.
2. Pursuant to the application for each of the Policies, the Primary Beneficiaries are as follows: 80% to Karen M. Goglia, wife, and 20% to "SAG Insurance Trust." (Compl. ¶ 12).
3. On August 30, 2017 NACOLAH paid Karen M. Goglia 80% of the death benefit as a Primary Beneficiary under the Policies by mailing her two checks totaling $401, 650.44 (representing $400, 000.00 of the face value of the Policies plus accrued interest of $1, 650.44). (Compl. ¶ 15).
4. Despite its good faith efforts, NACOLAH was unable to locate a copy of the SAG Insurance Trust or identify the name and whereabouts of the trustee of the SAG Insurance Trust, if it exists. (Compl. ¶ 32). The remaining amount of the death benefit proceeds in the amount of $104, 731.55, representing insurance proceeds in the amount of $100, 000.00 plus accrued interest (the "Proceeds"), were therefore deposited by NACOLAH with the Registry of the Court. (Doc. Nos. 13, 14, 25).
5. Defendants Karen M. Goglia, Lynn A. Leonard as Personal Representative of the Estate of Ronald A. Goglia, Stacie A. Goglia Constas, and the Unknown Trustee of the SAG Insurance Trust are potentially adverse claimants to the Proceeds of the Policies.
6. Defendants Karen and the Estate have filed an Answer to NACOLAH's Complaint. (Doc. No. 23).
7. Defendant Stacie A. Goglia Constas is in default, having failed to appear or respond to the Complaint after waiving service of summons on March 31, 2019. (Docs. No. 15, 28).
8. Defendant Unknown Trustee of the SAG Insurance Trust is in default, having failed to appear or respond to the Complaint after being served, pursuant to leave of this Court, with due notice through publication in the Boston Herald during the period of May 8, 2019 through June 12, 2019. (Docs. No. 22, 30, 32).
9. NACOLAH filed its Complaint for Interpleader in good faith and has done all that is required by law to perfect its interpleader action.
10. NACOLAH is entitled to be discharged from this litigation in accordance with the terms as provided in this order. Equitable Life Assur. Soc. of the U.S. v. Porter-Englehart, 867 F.2d 79, 84, 91 (1st Cir. 1989); 28 U.S.C. § 1335; Fed.R.Civ.P. 22.
11. By agreement of all parties who have appeared before the Court, NACOLAH is entitled to recover $8, 500.00 in attorney fees and costs incurred in ...

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