Mobley v. New York Life Ins Co, No. 751

CourtU.S. Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtBUTLER
Citation55 S.Ct. 876,99 A.L.R. 1166,79 L.Ed. 1621,295 U.S. 632
Docket NumberNo. 751
Decision Date27 May 1935
PartiesMOBLEY v. NEW YORK LIFE INS. CO

295 U.S. 632
55 S.Ct. 876
79 L.Ed. 1621
MOBLEY

v.

NEW YORK LIFE INS. CO.

No. 751.
Argued May 6, 1935.
Decided May 27, 1935.

Page 633

Mr. Sidney C. Mize, of Gulfport, Miss., for petitioner.

Mr. Wm. H. Watkins, of Jackson, Miss., for respondent.

Mr. Justice BUTLER delivered the opinion of the Court.

In 1933 petitioner brought two actions against respondent in the circuit court of Harrison county, Miss. There being diversity of citizenship, defendant removed them to the federal court for the southern district of that state. The court consolidated the cases for trial, and, at the close of the evidence, directed verdicts and entered judgments for defendant. The Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed. 74 F.(2d) 588. And, upon petitioner's claim that the decision in this case conflicts with that of the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Federal

Page 634

Life Ins. Co. v. Rascoe, 12 F.(2d) 693, and other cases, this court granted a writ of certiorari. 294 U.S. 705, 55 S.Ct. 640, 79 L.Ed. —-.

The first action, commenced July 25, is based on an alleged breach by anticipatory repudiation of an insurance policy for $5,000 issued August 7, 1928, by defendant on the life of plaintiff, payable to his wife as beneficiary and providing for monthly payments in case of disability. Plaintiff prays judgment for $33,980.1 The other, commenced November 1, is based on a similar life policy for $2,000 dated April 9, 1925, and payable to his mother. The prayer is for $11,600.2 His declarations may be construed to include demands for $70 per month during claimed expectation of life plus the face amounts of the policies, all reduced to present value. The insured seeks not payment of disability benefits as they mature according to the insurer's promises, nor the damages resulting from its failure regularly to pay installments when due. His claim, as indicated by the evidence offered, is at least for the present value of the monthly payments during his expectation of life and also for the present worth of the face value of the policy.

The question first to confront us is whether the evidence is sufficient to warrant a finding that the company repudiated the policies.

There is no controversy as to the facts. Except as above stated, the policies are alike. Each was issued in consideration of specified premiums payable semian

Page 635

nually in advance during the life of the insured. They provide: That whenever the insured is so disabled by bodily injury or disease that he is wholly prevented from performing any work, following any occupation, or engaging in any business for remuneration, and the company receives proof that this disability will continue for life, or that it has existed for the three months next preceding the proof, the company will pay monthly $10 per thousand of face value, and waive premiums; that, before making any income payment or waiving any premium, the company may demand proof of continuance of total disability (but not oftener than once a year after disability has continued for two full years), and that, upon failure to furnish such proof, no further payments will be made nor premiums waived.

December 13, 1930, the plaintiff suffered an acute attack of appendicitis for which he submitted to surgery. March 30, 1931, not having regained his health, he claimed monthly payments for permanent and total disability. On the proof he submitted and a physical examination made in its behalf, the company allowed the claim, waived premiums, and paid him $70 per month—$50 under one policy and $20 under the other—from January 13. The company caused his condition quite frequently to be observed. Several times between June 13, 1931, and March 1, 1933, it concluded that he was not continuously and totally disabled. On each of these occasions it notified him that no further income payments would be made and that premiums would no longer be waived. But in every instance, upon his insistence that he continued to be disabled and after further investigation and consideration, the company changed its ruling, paid past-due benefits, resumed monthly payments, and waived premiums.

March 1, 1933, the company wrote him stating it appeared that for some time he had not been continuously disabled within the meaning of the policies, that no fur-

Page 636

ther monthly payments would be made,...

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94 practice notes
  • Collins v. Mnuchin, No. 17-20364
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (5th Circuit)
    • 16 Julio 2018
    ...to least insulated from presidential control").143 See generally id.144 Id. at 824.145 PHH Corp. , 881 F.3d at 78.146 Humphrey’s Ex’r , 295 U.S. at 632, 55 S.Ct. 869.147 Free Enter. Fund , 561 U.S. at 499, 130 S.Ct. 3138 ; id. ("The Constitution requires that a President chosen by the entir......
  • Llc v. Lakes, No. C059239.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Marzo 2011
    ...interpretation is correct, that will be evidence of his continued adherence to the agreement. Mobley v. New York Life Insurance Co., 295 U.S. 632, 638, 55 S.Ct. 876, 79 L.Ed. 1621 (1935); Kimel v. Missouri State Life Insurance Co., 71 F.2d 921, 923 (10 Cir.1934); Milton v. H.C. Stone Lumber......
  • Boillot v. Income Guar. Co., No. 19139.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 23 Mayo 1938
    ...for installments as they fall due. New York Life Ins. Co. v. Viglas (U.S.), 80 L. Ed. 971; Mobley v. New York Life Ins. Co. (U.S.), 79 L. Ed. 1621. (c) An insurance company has the right to contest the disability claimed under an accident and health insurance policy for every period of time......
  • Llc v. Lakes, No. C059239.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Marzo 2011
    ...interpretation is correct, that will be evidence of his continued adherence to the agreement. Mobley v. New York Life Insurance Co., 295 U.S. 632, 638, 55 S.Ct. 876, 79 L.Ed. 1621 (1935); Kimel v. Missouri State Life Insurance Co., 71 F.2d 921, 923 (10 Cir.1934); Milton v. H.C. Stone Lumber......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
94 cases
  • Collins v. Mnuchin, No. 17-20364
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (5th Circuit)
    • 16 Julio 2018
    ...to least insulated from presidential control").143 See generally id.144 Id. at 824.145 PHH Corp. , 881 F.3d at 78.146 Humphrey’s Ex’r , 295 U.S. at 632, 55 S.Ct. 869.147 Free Enter. Fund , 561 U.S. at 499, 130 S.Ct. 3138 ; id. ("The Constitution requires that a President chosen by the entir......
  • Llc v. Lakes, No. C059239.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Marzo 2011
    ...interpretation is correct, that will be evidence of his continued adherence to the agreement. Mobley v. New York Life Insurance Co., 295 U.S. 632, 638, 55 S.Ct. 876, 79 L.Ed. 1621 (1935); Kimel v. Missouri State Life Insurance Co., 71 F.2d 921, 923 (10 Cir.1934); Milton v. H.C. Stone Lumber......
  • Boillot v. Income Guar. Co., No. 19139.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 23 Mayo 1938
    ...for installments as they fall due. New York Life Ins. Co. v. Viglas (U.S.), 80 L. Ed. 971; Mobley v. New York Life Ins. Co. (U.S.), 79 L. Ed. 1621. (c) An insurance company has the right to contest the disability claimed under an accident and health insurance policy for every period of time......
  • Llc v. Lakes, No. C059239.
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 23 Marzo 2011
    ...interpretation is correct, that will be evidence of his continued adherence to the agreement. Mobley v. New York Life Insurance Co., 295 U.S. 632, 638, 55 S.Ct. 876, 79 L.Ed. 1621 (1935); Kimel v. Missouri State Life Insurance Co., 71 F.2d 921, 923 (10 Cir.1934); Milton v. H.C. Stone Lumber......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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