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N.C. Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Co. v. Lunsford

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Court: North Carolina Supreme Court

Docket: 242A20

Opinion Date: August 13, 2021

Judge: Earls

Areas of Law: Insurance Law, Personal Injury

The Supreme Court reversed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the order and declaratory judgment of the superior court in favor of Defendant in this personal injury action, holding that, under the circumstances, Defendant was not entitled to collect underinsured benefits.

The defendant was a North Carolina resident who sought to collect underinsured motor vehicle coverage benefits from Plaintiff, her North Carolina insurer after she was injured while traveling in Alabama in a car owned and operated by a Tennessee resident and insured by a Tennessee insurer. Plaintiff denied the claim and initiated a declaratory judgment action seeking a ruling establishing that the UIM coverage of its politics did not apply to Defendant’s injuries. The trial court concluded that Defendant was not entitled to coverage under the UIM provision of her insurance contract. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that because the amount of the stacked UIM coverage limits exceeded the sum of the applicable bodily injury coverage limits, the Tennessee driver’s car was an “underinsured motor vehicle” as defined under North Carolina’s Financial Responsibility Act for the purposes of giving effect to Defendant’s contract with Plaintiff.

This case law update is brought to you by Freeway Law auto accident and personal injury lawyers in Orange County. The following is not one of our cases, but it is of some significance, and we thought we should share it with our readers for informational purposes. The information above is for informational purposes only and not to be construed as legal advice.

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