Thursday, December 28, 2017

Motion to Remand Post-Koken UIM/Bad Faith Case Back to State Court Denied

In the case of Carney v. GEICO, No. 2:17-cv-01486 (W.D. Pa. 2017 Mitchell, Mag. J.), a Federal District Magistrate Judge recommended a denial of a Plaintiff’s Motion to Remand a post-Koken matter to state court.  

The case involved a suit by the Plaintiff for breach of contract in a UIM claim along with claims of bad faith.  The central issue of the case revolved around a minor Plaintiff’s residency.   More specifically, if the minor Plaintiff resided with her grandparents, the minor Plaintiff would be able to stack UIM benefits.  According to the Defendant carrier, if it was determined that the minor Plaintiff did not reside with her grandparents, stacking would not be available.  

The Defendant carrier removed the case to federal court. The Plaintiff responded with a Motion to Remand asserting that this matter was essentially a declaratory judgment action that did not belong in federal court.  

In issuing his report and recommendation, the United States Magistrate Judge noted that federal courts routinely resolve issues of state law relating to insurance, including UIM benefits and bad faith claims.   As such, the Motion to Remand was denied.  

Anyone wishing to review this decision may click this LINK.

I send thanks to Attorney Joseph Hudock of the Pittsburgh law firm of Summers McDonnell Hudock & Guthrie for bringing this decision to my attention. 

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