This case had bounced around from Federal Court to Hinds County Chancery Court and eventually wound up in Rankin County in the hands of Judge Grant.
He made no bones about the fact that Hood overreached in his charges against the insurance companies (Allstate and Nationwide – State Farm had already been dismissed).
From the 26 page opinion.
Therefore, the Court finds that the Attorney General has no standing to assert claims on behalf of Nationwide’s or Allstate’s policyholders with regard to the subject policies, including flood exclusions. Judgement on the pleadings in regard to Defendant’s argument that the Attorney General lacks standing to challenge the private insurance contracts at issue should be granted to Defendants.
It’s funny. I didn’t see the press release from Jim Hood’s office announcing this important court decision, which came down on December 22.
In light of Hood’s seemingly endless effort to grab the headlines, this court decision is a serious blow. You can win an election by consistently beating your opponent in the press. However, legal actions are different.
Hood is now chasing Entergy and seemingly stepping over the Public Service Commission to try and do it, just like he stepped on the State Insurance Commissioner’s office in chasing this PR rainbow. Of course, at the end of this rainbow was a judge that eviscerated Hood’s arguments one by one.
It is widely believed, and I share that belief, that Hood chased the insurance companies to prop up his trial lawyer buddies. I maintain we may be seeing a similar situation with Entergy, though those lawyers have yet to be revealed publicly. I also believe we may see the same result . . . great headlines for Hood, but at the end of the day there will be little to show for it.