A federal court judge has ruled that an insurance company doesn’t have to pay an East Haddam man the $257,000 insurance policy belonging to his murdered wife even though no one has been charged in her 2018 death.
Judge Victor Bolden recently ordered the Zurich American Life Insurance Company to place Sandra Kalosky’s insurance benefit into an escrow account rather than pay it to her husband Robert Kalosky. Bolden said since the March 2018 homicide is unsolved the insurance company is in an untenable position.
“If Zurich paid the benefits to Mr. Kalosky, and then Mr. Kalosky was then found to be disqualified, Zurich may face a claim from Ms. Kalosky’s step-son or sisters,” Bolden wrote. “On the other hand if Zurich paid the benefits to Ms. Kalosky’s step-son or sisters, and the murder subsequently was solved in a manner that made it more likely then not Mr. Kalosky wasn’t the murderer, Zurich would face a claim from Mr. Kalosky."
Sandra Kalosky, 56, was found beaten to death in her home on North Moodus Road on March 23, 2018. State police have said little about her death other than that she died of blunt trauma to the head and her death has been ruled a homicide. No one has been arrested.
Robert Kalosky, who is 67, filed a claim for his wife’s life insurance benefit five days after the murder. He is listed as the sole beneficiary of her policy, which was taken out in 2011.
Rather than pay the claim the insurance company filed a federal lawsuit a year after her murder because it didn’t want to pay the husband in case he was ever charged with her murder. Sandra was Kalosky’s second wife to die under suspicious circumstances.
Kalosky has not responded to the lawsuit and has ignored several court dates. Bolden has granted a default motion against Kalosky for failing to respond to the lawsuit. Kalosky hasn’t commented on his wife’s death other than a now-removed Facebook post that thanked his “real friends” for standing by him following the murder.
Bolden has ordered Zurich to turn the money over to the U.S. District Court Clerk to be put into an escrow account until or if it is ever determined who killed Sandra Kalosky and who the beneficiary should be. The company’s attorney’s made it clear it didn’t want to pay Kalosky in the initial filing.
“Inasmuch as the homicide death of the deceased remains open and unsolved, [Zurich] cannot determine whether a court would find that Robert Kalosky is and/or may be disqualified from receiving the plan benefits based on federal common law and/or Connecticut state law that prohibits an individual from receiving funds if that person is convicted in the death of the deceased,” said Regen O’Malley, a lawyer for [Zurich], in a court filing.
If a federal judge were to eventually rule that Robert Kalosky isn’t eligible to receive the death benefit then either his son, Phillip T. Kalosky, or Sandra Kalosky’s surviving sisters, Barbara Kaluza or Janet Guerrini, could be beneficiaries.
Sandra Kalosky is the second wife of Robert Kalosky’s who has died under violent circumstances in the same house.
Nearly two decades ago, Paula Kalosky was found with a single gunshot wound to the head in the same home. The death was initially ruled a suicide but changed to "undetermined, " in 2004. Robert Kalosky has not been charged nor named as a suspect in either death.
The change in the 2004 case came after John Carbo, Paula Kalosky’s brother, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Robert Kalosky.
The lawsuit was settled for about $95,000 just before evidence was to start before a jury. The majority of the settlement, $53,000, was placed into a college fund for the couple’s son, who eventually went to Johnson & Wales University.
According to the wrongful-death lawsuit, the two women knew each other and Sandra divorced her husband and moved in with Robert Kalosky about a year after Paula Kalosky’s death.
In his statement to state police after Paula Kalosky's body was found, a copy of which is in Carbo's possession, Robert Kalosky said he didn't hear any gunshots that morning. He told police he left the house and went to withdraw money from an ATM and to get gas. After coming home and starting breakfast, he went to check on his wife and found her dead with his gun next to her.
Robert Kalosky said he called 911, then moved the gun at the behest of the dispatcher before going outside to wait for emergency personnel. Kalosky told police that Paula had been upset by the death of her mother from cancer about five months earlier.
Carbo said his sister, who worked for a Hartford insurance company, was about to graduate from the University of Hartford and had picked out her graduation gown a few days before her death.
After the suicide ruling, the family hired Michael Malchick, a former state police detective, to review the case. The state police reopened the case and the manner of death was changed to "undetermined, " according to the wrongful death suit and medical examiner’s office.
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