Davis v. Southern Life Ins. Co., No. 18616

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Writing for the CourtMOSS; LEWIS, BUSSEY and BRAILSFORD, JJ., and G. BADGER BAKER, Acting
Citation249 S.C. 194,153 S.E.2d 399
PartiesFannie Marie DAVIS, Appellant, v. SOUTHERN LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY and Marion Copeland d/b/a Deluxe Funeral Home, of whom Southern Life Insurance Company is, Respondent.
Docket NumberNo. 18616
Decision Date08 March 1967

Page 399

153 S.E.2d 399
249 S.C. 194
Fannie Marie DAVIS, Appellant,
v.
SOUTHERN LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY and Marion Copeland d/b/a
Deluxe Funeral Home, of whom Southern Life
Insurance Company is, Respondent.
No. 18616.
Supreme Court of South Carolina.
March 8, 1967.

[249 S.C. 195]

Page 400

Floyd & Craig, Hartsville, for appellant.

[249 S.C. 196] Paulling & James, Darlington, for respondent.

MOSS, Chief Justice.

Southern Life Insurance Company, the respondent herein, on January 6, 1964, issued to Harry Davis an insurance policy on his life in the face amount of Five Hundred & 00/100 ($500.00) Dollars, and his wife, Fannie Marie Davis, the appellant herein, was therein designated the [249 S.C. 197] beneficiary. It was provided by the terms of the aforesaid policy that the insured had the right to change the beneficiary. Thereafter, in accordance with the reservation made, Marion Copeland was designated as beneficiary of said policy in lieu of the appellant and such change was endorsed upon the said policy on September 18, 1964. The insured died on December 1, 1965.

The appellant commenced this action on May 31, 1966. In the complaint she alleged that the aforesaid insurance was purchased by her husband so that she could use the proceeds thereof for his proper burial. It was further alleged that subsequent to the issuance of said policy that the respondent, in furtherance of a scheme and conspiracy to cheat and defraud her out of the proceeds of said policy and the use thereof to provide for the burial of her said husband, did enter into an unlawful agreement with Marion Copeland, an undertaker, who operated a funeral home and had no insurable interest in the life of her husband, whereby the said Copeland would, if designated as beneficiary in said policy, pay the premiums thereon and upon the death of the insured would give him a decent burial to be paid for out of the proceeds of said policy. It was further alleged that the insured and the appellant were ignorant and uneducated negroes and upon receiving assurance from the undertaker and the respondent that the said agreement was proper and would be carried out, consented that Copeland be named as beneficiary in the aforesaid policy. It was further alleged that the respondent and Copeland knew, or should have known, that the aforesaid agreement was illegal and void and, therefore, the appellant remained and still is the

Page 401

legal beneficiary of said policy. It was further alleged that the respondent refused to pay over the proceeds of said insurance policy to the appellant in consummation of an aforesaid unlawful scheme and conspiracy. The appellant further alleged that as a result of the aforesaid conspiracy, she has been caused to suffer great mental anguish and unnecessary grief, to spend many sleepless nights worrying [249 S.C. 198] about her inability to pay said funeral expenses after being deprived of her only means of payment,...

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5 practice notes
  • Estate of Revis by Revis v. Revis, No. 2647
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • December 3, 1996
    ...have plain language which directly addresses the life insurance policies owned by Revis at the time. In Davis v. Southern Life Ins. Co., 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399 (1967), our supreme court ruled that during the lifetime of the insured the named beneficiary has no vested property right in......
  • Daniels v. Coleman, No. 18959
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • September 5, 1969
    ...and deceit must be founded on proof of legal injury and actual damage and the two elements must concur. Davis v. Southern Life Ins. Co., 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399. The evidence is conclusive that the note and mortgage, the possession of which was alleged to have been obtained by fraud an......
  • Horne v. Gulf Life Ins. Co., No. 21638
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 8, 1982
    ...beneficiary has a mere expectancy; the complete control of the policy remains in the insured. Davis v. Southern Life Insurance Company, 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399 (1967); Swygert v. Durham Life Ins. Co., 229 S.C. 199, 92 S.E.2d 478 (1956); Davis v. Acacia Mutual Life Ins. Co., infra. In R......
  • Wines v. State, No. 18615
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • March 8, 1967
    ...forego any decision of the case on its merits at this time. The record contains no evidence specifically addressed to whether petitioner's[249 S.C. 194] mental deficiency is so great as to render him unable to comprehend or transact the ordinary affairs of life, but the evidence generally a......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
5 cases
  • Estate of Revis by Revis v. Revis, No. 2647
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • December 3, 1996
    ...have plain language which directly addresses the life insurance policies owned by Revis at the time. In Davis v. Southern Life Ins. Co., 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399 (1967), our supreme court ruled that during the lifetime of the insured the named beneficiary has no vested property right in......
  • Daniels v. Coleman, No. 18959
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • September 5, 1969
    ...and deceit must be founded on proof of legal injury and actual damage and the two elements must concur. Davis v. Southern Life Ins. Co., 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399. The evidence is conclusive that the note and mortgage, the possession of which was alleged to have been obtained by fraud an......
  • Horne v. Gulf Life Ins. Co., No. 21638
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 8, 1982
    ...beneficiary has a mere expectancy; the complete control of the policy remains in the insured. Davis v. Southern Life Insurance Company, 249 S.C. 194, 153 S.E.2d 399 (1967); Swygert v. Durham Life Ins. Co., 229 S.C. 199, 92 S.E.2d 478 (1956); Davis v. Acacia Mutual Life Ins. Co., infra. In R......
  • Wines v. State, No. 18615
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • March 8, 1967
    ...forego any decision of the case on its merits at this time. The record contains no evidence specifically addressed to whether petitioner's[249 S.C. 194] mental deficiency is so great as to render him unable to comprehend or transact the ordinary affairs of life, but the evidence generally a......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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