Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Maryland Insurance Administration v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.

Court of Special Appeals of Maryland

June 1, 2016

MARYLAND INSURANCE ADMINISTRATION
v.
STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY

          Berger, Reed, Rodowsky, Lawrence F. (Retired, Specially Assigned), JJ. [*]

          OPINION

          Rodowsky, J.

         At issue here are the applicability of the personal injury protection (PIP) coverage provisions and the validity of the owned but uninsured exclusion from PIP coverage in an automobile liability policy issued by the appellee, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company (State Farm) to its named insured, Alaskan Bundue-Conteh (the Claimant). These proceedings arise on the Claimant's complaint to the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) that State Farm had denied his claim for PIP benefits. Applying certain trade practice enforcement provisions, MIA agreed with the Claimant on the merits and, in final agency action, imposed a penalty on State Farm by ordering payment of the benefits with statutory interest. In an action for judicial review, the Circuit Court for Baltimore City reversed. This appeal followed. For the reasons set forth below, we shall affirm the circuit court.

         The facts are undisputed. The Claimant was the owner of two automobiles. His 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee was insured by State Farm under an automobile liability policy that included PIP coverage. He also owned a 2006 Ford Crown Victoria that he drove as a taxicab. It was insured for liability with Amalgamated Casualty Insurance Co. under a policy that did not contain PIP coverage. On November 14, 2011, while Claimant was occupying his taxicab, it was rear-ended by another automobile, causing Claimant personal injuries. Claimant is seeking a recovery of PIP benefits under a policy covering an owned motor vehicle that he was not occupying at the time of the accident. That State Farm policy contains the exclusion from PIP coverage that is set forth below:

         "Exclusions

"THERE IS NO COVERAGE:
....
"3. FOR YOU OR ANY RESIDENT RELATIVE WHILE
OCCUPYING A MOTOR VEHICLE OWNED BY YOU OR ANY RESIDENT RELATIVE AND WHICH IS NOT INSURED UNDER THE LIABILITY COVERAGE OF THIS POLICY."

         There are a number of provisions of the Insurance Article of the Maryland Code that are relied upon in the arguments of the parties. Some of those statutes are set forth below. Unless otherwise noted, all references are to sections of Maryland Code (1997, 2011 Repl. Vol.), Article, "Insurance, " Title 19, "Property and Casualty Insurance, " Subtitle 5, "Motor

         Vehicle Insurance – Primary Coverage."

"§ 19-501. Definitions.
"(a) In general. – In this subtitle, the following words have the meanings indicated.
"(b) Motor Vehicle. – ...
"(2) 'Motor vehicle' does not include: ....
"(ii) a taxicab as defined in § 11-165 of the Transportation Article[.]
"(c) Motor vehicle accident. – (1) 'Motor vehicle accident' means an occurrence involving a motor vehicle that results in damage to property or injury to a person."
"§ 19-505. Personal injury protection coverage – In general.
"(a) Coverage required. – Unless waived in accordance with § 19-506 of this subtitle, each insurer that issues, sells, or delivers a motor vehicle liability insurance policy in the State shall provide coverage for the medical, hospital, and disability benefits described in this section for each of the following individuals: "(1) ....
"(i) the first named insured, and any family member of the first named insured who resides in the first named insured's household, who is injured in any motor vehicle accident, including an accident that involves an uninsured motor vehicle or a motor vehicle the identity of which cannot be ascertained[.] ....
"(c) Exclusions. – (1) An insurer may exclude from the coverage described in this section benefits for: ....
"(ii) the named insured or a family member of the named insured who resides in the named insured's household for an injury that occurs while the named insured or family member is occupying an uninsured motor vehicle owned by:
"1. the named insured[.]"
"ยง 19-513. Limitations on recovery of ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.