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First State Bank of Denton v. Maryland Casualty Co.

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
918 F.2d 38 (5th Cir. 1990)


Facts

One of the Millses’ houses burned down, but their insurance company, Maryland Casualty (defendant), determined that the house was intentionally burned, likely by Mr. Mills, and as a result did not pay the Millses on their policy. The Millses brought suit to recover on their policy, but both died before trial. The First State Bank of Denton (Bank) (plaintiff) continued the Millses’ claim as executor of the will of Mr. Mills. Maryland Casualty sought to introduce into evidence a phone conversation between a police dispatcher and an unknown individual at the Millses’ other house (the house that did not burn down). The call was placed about 15 minutes after the fire in the Millses’ first house started and the unknown individual at the Millses’ other house stated that Mr. Mills was not there. The trial court admitted the evidence. The Bank appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Smith, J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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