An Alabama state court recently ruled that Protective Life Insurance wrongly denied California-based Apex Parks Group’s claim for unpaid key person death benefits. Apex, an amusement park company, insured its founder and CEO Alexander “Al” Weber Jr., who died unexpectedly in November 2016 while on vacation. Eight months earlier, Apex purchased “key person” insurance coverage from Protective. According to the complaint, Protective’s medical examiner had received Mr. Weber’s medical history prior to issuing the policy.
Upon Mr. Weber’s death, Apex sought coverage under the policy. After interviewing Mr. Weber’s wife and reviewing other records, Protective denied coverage based on a “material change” in the CEO’s health status. On September 21, 2018, following a seven day trial, an Alabama jury ruled that Protective wrongly refused to pay $10 million in benefits to Apex. The jury did not award any additional economic or punitive damages.