Pioneer State Mutual loses PIP argument about domicile
Pioneer is a late-starting competitor for cheapest no fault insurer in Michigan. While not up to the standards of Allstate in cynical denial of benefits, Pioneer has demonstrated a willingness to challenge its insureds' claims on virtually any grounds available. This week, it lost an argument attempting to transfer PIP expenses to State Farm.
Jason Teeple is a 34 year-old resident of the U.P. He doesn't have a driver's license or own a car. He was injured in a motor vehicle collision while a passenger in a vehicle insured with Pioneer. Pioneer denied his PIP benefits, arguing that he was a resident of his mother's home, even though he hadn't lived with her in about eight years. Teeple used his mother's home on a regular basis for visits with his child and as his mailing address, but was currently living in an RV with a girlfriend. Since living with his mother, he had lived for several years with a fiance and in several other cities for significant periods. The Court found that under the facts as elicited, he was not domiciled with his mother and not a "member of her household."