The town received the second and final payment of $1,147,500 in the sale of its claim against Legion Insurance Company, the town’s insurer in 2000 when a falling tree on Pocono Road took the life of an innocent Brookfield resident driving by. The town settled an ensuing lawsuit in the matter, which was covered by Legion Insurance, but required $2.5 million out of pocket for the town.
The town filed a claim against the company to recoup that cost, however the case wasn’t settled before Legion filed for liquidation in 2003.
This second payment together with one of $892,500 received earlier this year equal $2,040,000, some 80 percent of what the town paid, said First Selectman Bill Davidson, who explained that the town’s claim against Legion was purchased by a third party, Liquidity Solutions, which issued the checks.
When Legion went into bankruptcy, the town filed in court for reparations and was told it was a “high priority claim,” Davidson said, meaning that Brookfield was positioned well on the list of parties expecting to be paid. However, there was no clear timetable on when the claim would be settled and there “was no expectation ever that we’d get this kind of reimbursement back,” he said.
According to Davidson, an initial offer of less than $700,000 was made, however, under the advice of Danbury attorney Jack Garamella, who has been with the case since the tragic accident occurred, it was declined. The town made a single counter offer of $1,147,500 and which was accepted in September.
The second check was received last month and deposited in the town’s fund balance, part of which will be used to more fully fund the town’s pension liability.