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Houchens v. American Home Assurance Co.

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
927 F.2d 163 (4th Cir. 1991)


Facts

Alice Houchens (plainitff) brought suit against American Home Assurance Co. (American) (defendant) to recover on occupational accidental injury and death insurance policies issued to her husband, Coulter, who disappeared during a trip to Thailand. The court had granted Ms. Houchens’ motion to declare her husband legally dead. American refused to pay on the policies because both required death to occur by accident and there was no evidence that Mr. Houchens had died an accidental death. American moved for summary judgment on Ms. Houchens’ suit, asserting that there was no genuine issue of material fact and that it was entitled to judgment as a matter of law. The court granted American’s motion, and Ms. Houchens appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Ervin, C.J.)

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