Judge Dismisses Arizona AOB Fraud Lawsuit

U.S. District Court Judge Susan Brnovich approved the stipulation for dismissal in the suit between Government Employees Insurance Co., GEICO Indemnity Co., GEICO General Insurance Company and GEICO Casualty Co. (collectively Geico) and defendants, Auto Glass Express (AGE) and its owners and managers, Danielle Dean and Saxton Lafasto for an alleged fraudulent scheme. The order, according to Brnovich, dismisses the case in its entirety.

“It is ordered approving the stipulation for dismissal with prejudice and dismissing this action in its entirety, with prejudice, with each party to bear its own attorneys’ fees and costs,” a portion of the order reads. Such blanket demands often mean a settlement has been achieved.

Background

Geico sought to be reimbursed for windshield replacement services that were allegedly provided to its insured customers in its complaint made earlier this year. Geico originally sought to recover financial damages under the civil racketeer influenced and corrupt organizations act (RICO) statutes.

Geico provided the following rationale as to why AGE’s auto glass claims should be seen as fraudulent:

  • The case involves charges for illusory windshield replacement services and that were never legitimately performed or provided; and
  • Services were non-reimbursable because AGE never obtained assignments of benefits (AOB) from insureds.

The alleged fraudulent scheme began in 2018 and continues to the present day, according to Geico’s complaint. AGE and its owners, Dean and Lafasto then responded to Geico’s complaint.

“Defendants admit only that Geico seeks to recover more than $950,000 and oppose the request and deny the remaining allegations,” a portion of the defendant’s response reads.

In addition to denying the fraudulent allegations, the defendants filed a counter lawsuit against the auto insurance company, alleging it “has a preferential relationship with Safelite Group, Inc. (Safelite) and attempts to direct its insureds to Safelite for windshield replacement services.”

Dean and Lafasto sought to recover financial damages, according to their response to Geico’s complaint.

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