Farm Bureau secures judgment that it was not obligated to provide coverage on son who was delivering pizza when he struck another car
Farm Bureau sued Michelle and James Wagner, and Conor and Greg Lewis, its insureds, after Conor rear-ended Michelle's car while delivering pizza. He told Wagner after the wreck that he was looking down to confirm an address when he struck her car. Farm Bureau argued that coverage was excluded under the Lewis's auto policy because Conor was "operating a vehicle while it is being used to carry persons or property for a fee." Both families argued that the policy exclusion language was ambiguous and that the coverage the Lewis's purchased should apply to Wagner's injuries. The trial court rejected this argument and the Court of Appeals affirmed. The Court pointed out that the Michigan Supreme Court has expressly repudiated the former "doctrine of reasonable expectations" that interpreted an insurance policy according to what the reasonable insured would anticipate at the time of purchase.