Insurance

Issues: Uninsured motorist coverage; Whether plaintiff was an insured under the terms of the policy; The No-Fault Act (MCL 500.3101 et seq.); Bianchi v. Auto Club of MI; Berry v. State Farm Mut. Auto Ins. Co.; Titan Ins. Co. v. Hyten; Singer v. American States Ins.; Stoddard v. Citizens Ins. Co. of Am.; "Insured," "you," & "family member" defined; DeFrain v. State Farm Mut. Auto Ins. Co.; Wilkie v. Auto-Owners Ins. Co.; Claim that the policy was ambiguous; City of Grosse Pointe Park v. Michigan Mun. Liab. & Prop. Pool; Mayor of City of Lansing v. Michigan Pub. Serv. Comm'n; The "doctrine of illusory coverage"; Ile v. Foremost Ins. Co.

Court: Michigan Court of Appeals (Unpublished)

Case Name: Vaughan v. Doe

e-Journal Number: 57734

Judge(s): Per Curiam – Jansen, Saad, and Donofrio

 

The court held that the plaintiff was not an insured under the terms of the policy. Also, it held that the policy was not ambiguous, and that the uninsured motorist coverage was not illusory. Thus, it affirmed that trial court's grant of summary disposition in favor of the defendant-insurer. The case arose from a hit-and-run automobile accident in which plaintiff was injured while driving a car owned by her father. At the time of the accident, she was not living with her father. The car was insured under a policy with defendant. She contended that the trial court erred in granting summary disposition in favor of defendant because she was an insured under the terms of the policy. The court held that it was clear "the only person named as an insured on the declarations page was plaintiff's father." While she was listed in another section as a "driver," she was not listed on the first page, where it listed the "named insured." There also was no dispute that she did not reside with her father. Thus, she was not entitled to uninsured motorist benefits under the clear and unambiguous policy language. "Given that the policy clearly and unambiguously provides who is entitled to uninsured motorist benefits," and she did "not fall within the scope of covered individuals, plaintiff allegedly acting as an insured under the terms of the policy" was not a basis for the trial court to refuse to enforce the contract as written.

 

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