Farmers Insurance loses battle over paying PIP benefits
The Auto Club was assigned to pay PIP benefits after Farmers Insurance refused to cover the medical expenses and wage loss of Vernest and Kim Scott. The Scotts were using a vehicle owned by Francine Scott, but insured with Farmers through her father, Willie Sims. The Auto Club paid benefits as required under the Assigned Claims Plan but sued Farmers for reimbursement, since Farmers insured the auto which the Scotts occupied. The Court reviewed the Farmers policy language and concluded that Farmers was obligated to provide coverage. Many insureds believe that they have insurance if they have received a policy from the insurer, not recognizing that in the event of a large claim, many insurers will turn over every possible stone to find excuses to void the policy or invalidate coverage. In cases like this one, where the Scotts obtained discounted coverage by purchasing through a non-owner (apparently as part of a fleet), the coverage isn't cheap--it may well be an illusion.