Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Does The Issuance of a New Policy Number on an Automobile Insurance Policy Constitute the Creation of a New Policy?

In the case of Shea v. Nationwide Ins. Co. and Davis, No. 3:22-CV0-00494-MEM (M.D. Pa. April 6, 2023 Mannion, J.), Judge Malachy E. Mannion of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania adopted the Report and Recommendation of Chief Federal Magistrate Judge Karoline Mehalchick and ordered that this declaratory judgment action be remanded to state court for review by the state court.

The legal issue presented in this matter addressed “the novel question or whether or not the issuance of a new policy number constitutes the establishment of a new policy requiring new sign down forms.”

The court determined that this issue presented a novel and unsettled issue of state law. As such, under the factors set forth in the case of Reifer v. Westport Ins. Corp., 751 F.3d 129 (3d. Cir. 2014), the court decided to remand the case to the state court for a decision.  The case was remanded to the Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas.

Anyone wishing to review a copy of the Report and Recommendation of Judge Mehalchick and well as the decision of Judgment Mannion approving the Report and Recommendation may click this LINK.

Plaintiff's counsel in this case was Attorney Neil T. O’Donnell and Attorney Gerard Gaughan of the Kingston, PA law firm of O’Donnell Law Offices.


Source of image: Photo by Priscilla Piacquadio on

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