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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Salida, Colorado bank sues insurance company

A trial has been set for a lawsuit in which High Country Bank of Salida alleges an insurance company reneged on a purported obligation to pay a claim stemming from an embezzlement.The bank alleges Kansas Bankers Surety Co. wrongfully refused to pay a $319,566 claim that the bank contends was due under terms of a fidelity bond the company issued to the bank in 2005.The alleged bank loss was from the 2005-06 embezzlement by Marilea J. Rans, the former bank chief loan officer.She was sentenced in 2008 to three years in federal prison for the crime.Kansas Bankers Surety of Topeka is part of the financial empire of investor Warren Buffett.A fidelity bond is insurance for losses caused by dishonest acts of an employee of a policyholder.Kansas Bankers contends it is not liable for the alleged losses of the bank. The bank disputes the company contention that the bank did not meet legal deadlines to file its insurance claim and its lawsuit.
Senior U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch in Denver set the case for jury trial in December in Denver.
He denied the Kansas Bankers' request for him to decide the case based solely upon documents and arguments filed by both sides.

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