Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Latest Stacking Opinion From Pennsylvania Superior Court (Non-Precedential)




In a recent non-precedential decision in the case of Newhook v. Erie Ins. Exch., No. 1917 EDA 2017 (Pa. Super.  April 25, 2018 Panela, J., Lazarus, J., and Strassburger, J.), the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed a trial court’s decision which held that the carrier was required to provide a new rejection of stacking waiver form when cars are added to a policy where stacking was previously rejected. 
The carrier attempted to argue that Sackett II applied and that the additional cars were continuous coverage.   In this memorandum opinion, the Superior Court instead concluded that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision in Sackett I and the Pennsylvania Superior Court’s en banc decision in Bumbarger controlled.

As such, the insured was allowed stacked UIM coverage.
In this Newhook decision, the Superior Court noted that the analysis for determining when a carrier was required to secure new rejection of stacking forms following the addition of a new vehicle to a policy involved (1) a review of how the new vehicle was added to the policy, i.e., via endorsement or a newly acquired auto clause, and (2) a review of what was the specific language of the relevant clause(s) in the insurance policy.  See Mem. Op. at p. 7.

Anyone wishing to review this non-precedential decision may click this LINK.

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

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