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Troubled young man is domiciled with father, despite infrequent presence at home

Ian Rossman initiated a lawsuit against several insurers, where Titan, the Auto Club and Bristol West all disputed who was first in priority to pay for the young man's PIP expenses.  Rossman's son was badly hurt when he was struck by a car.  According to the facts, the young man was in his early 20s and recently discharged from a halfway home.  He had been jailed in the past, but basically returned to live with his father intermittently, because his dad "did not want to see him living on the streets." 

While some insurers argued that he was a documented "homeless" person who did not intend his father's home to be his domicile, AAA argued that under Michigan law, everyone has one domicile.  The Appellate Court agreed with AAA and held that absences without an intent to make a permanent new home do not change the existence of the existing domicile.  The Court pointed to the fact that Rossman's alternative lodgings were never indefinite in duration, and that he continued to receive mail at his father's home, as well as using the home as his address on legal documents.  It also refused to give weight to the son's intent to leave his father's homestead eventually, since it is the universal intent of virtually every child to  eventually leave the parents' home.

Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
309 East Front Street
Traverse City, Michigan 49684
Toll Free: 1-800-678-1307
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