Allstate required to pay overdue PIP benefits; sanctioned for late payment
Mona Lisa Frazier (now there's a name you can remember) had to sue Allstate to collect PIP benefits. After a jury verdict in her favor, Allstate appealed. The Court of Appeals not only upheld the verdict, it reversed the lower court's failure to award sanctions against Allstate for overdue payment of benefits.
Frazier was loading her belongings into her pickup on a sloped, icy surface, when she fell while attempting to close the passenger door. She suffered a serious injury and claimed personal injury protection benefits (medical expenses and up to three years of wage loss and domestic services) from her auto insurer. Allstate argued that she was not "using her pickup for a transportation function" at the time she fell, and that she was not in contact with the pickup door while loading or unloading the vehicle when she fell.The lower court submitted the case to the jury to decide whether Frazier was telling the truth about how her injury occurred. It concluded she was, and awarded PIP benefits. Allstate appealed on a number of technical issues, all of which were dismissed by the appellate judges. These judges also ruled that Allstate was "unreasonable" in denying PIP benefits and therefore subject to sanctions under the no fault act. "You're in good hands".....until you make a claim.