Monday, May 12, 2014

Rejection of UM/UIM Mandates Apply to Commercial Fleet Vehicles

In its recent April 2, 2014 notable but "non-precedential" decision in the case of Egan v. USI Mid-Atlantic, Inc., --- A.3d --- (Pa. Super. Ct. April 2, 2014), the Pennsylvania Superior Court held that the UM/UIM rejection form requirements under the MVFRL applied to commercial fleet vehicles.  The court also held in this case that an insurance agent could be held liable for punitive damages under certain circumstances.

This Superior Court opinion addresses the applicability of the rejection of uninsured and underinsured waiver on a corporate fleet policy.  The court in Egan thoroughly reviewed the entire MVFRL and the mandates of 75 Pa.C.S.A. Sections 1731 and 1738. 

The Superior Court ultimately ruled, as a matter of law, that Section 1731 mandates that UM/UIM coverage must be offered on a commercial fleet vehicle, and any rejection form must likewise comply with Section 1731.

The court additionally ruled that an insurance broker can be held liable for punitive damages for his or her actions in the handling of the uninsured and underinsured motorist claim.

I send thanks to Attorney Scott Cooper of the Harrisburg, PA law firm of Schmidt Kramer for bringing this case to my attention.

Anyone wishing to review this case, may click HERE.

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