Allstate allowed to avoid arbitration despite "inconsistent" and "contradictory" claims
Alan Buckman was injured in a collision with an uninsured driver. The good news for Buckman was that he bought uninsured motorist coverage with his mandatory no fault auto coverage; the bad news was that he bought it from Allstate. When Buckman sought to arbitrate his claim with Allstate, pursuant to the mandatory arbitration policy provision, Allstate refused, claiming that it had modified the policy to reserve the right to refuse to arbitrate. Buckman filed a lawsuit to compel Allstate to arbitrate, and the trial court granted his request, finding that Allstate's claims about amending the policy provision were inconsistent and contradictory. Allstate appealed the decision to the Court of Appeals.
Unfortunately, the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's decision and sent the case back to the lower court. While the appellate court judges agreed that Allstate's amendment claims and its filings with the court were both contradictory and inconsistent, it ruled that it could not enforce the arbitration claim as filed by Buckman because he did not file with the court the Declaration Page along with the no fault policy. As a result, the judges determined that he could not prove the relevant dates or the Named Insureds, and was thus unable to force Allstate to comply with the policy.