The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

Insurance Law Supreme Court Opinion

by Roy, Christopher


SC19964 - Samelko v. Kingstone Ins. Co. ("In this case, we must decide whether a Connecticut court may properly exercise personal jurisdiction over an out-of-state insurer whose only significant contacts with this state are the inclusion of Connecticut within the coverage territory of an automobile insurance policy and the occurrence of an automobile collision in Connecticut involving its insured. The defendant, Kingstone Insurance Company, a company domiciled in New York, contractually agreed to defend and indemnify its insured nationwide. After a vehicle driven by the insured collided in Connecticut with a vehicle driven by the plaintiffs, Jerzy and Sylvia Samelko, however, the defendant failed to defend its insured and failed to provide indemnity after a judgment was rendered against the insured for damages resulting from the collision. The plaintiffs were subrogated to the rights of the insured under the policy issued by the defendant pursuant to General Statutes § 38a-321 and brought this action directly against the defendant to recover damages.

"The trial court dismissed the action on the ground that it lacked personal jurisdiction over the defendant. We conclude, however, that exercising personal jurisdiction over the defendant insurer is permitted by our corporate long arm statute, General Statutes § 33-929 (f) (1), and comports with the due process clause of the fourteenth amendment to the United Statutes Constitution. See U.S. Const., amend. XIV, § 1. Accordingly, we disagree with the trial court's contrary conclusion and, therefore, reverse and remand the case with direction to deny the defendant’s motion to dismiss and for further proceedings."