SAN JOSE — A California man is suing North America Life, alleging breach of contract and violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

John Pagendarm of Campbell, California, filed a complaint July 21 in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California San Jose Division against Life Insurance Company of North America, alleging the insurance firm wrongfully denied the plaintiff's claim for disability benefits.

According to the complaint, Pagendarm became disabled in 1999 due to a mountain climbing accident that caused a severe traumatic brain injury. In 2014, the lawsuit states, Pagendarm suffered post traumatic stress disorder after trying to revive a man who collapsed and died on a hiking trail. The suit says he applied for disability benefits but was denied. 

The plaintiff alleges North America Life wrongfully denied his appeal for long-term benefits. 

Pagendarm seeks long-term disability benefits, interest, legal fees and all other relief the court deems just. He is represented by attorney Claire Kennedy-Wilkins of Springer Ayeni in Oakland.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California San Jose Division case number 5:17-cv-04131-HRL

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U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division
South 1st Street
San Jose, CA - 95113

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