Huber v Frankenmuth Mutual Ins Co; (COA-PUB, 6/2/1987; RB #1049)


Michigan Court of Appeals; Docket No. 86577; Published    
Judges Shepherd, Wahls, and Sullivan; Unanimous  
Official Michigan Reporter Citation:  160 Mich App 568; Link to Opinion alt   

General Rule of Priority [§3114(1)]  
Exception for Employer Provided Vehicles [§3114(3)]  
Exception for Occupants [§3114(4)]   
Recoupment Between Equal Priority Insurers [§3115(2)]

Not Applicable

In this unanimous Opinion by Judge Wahls, the Court of Appeals dealt with several issues regarding priority issues arising from a work-related automobile accident. Plaintiff was injured when he was driving a motor vehicle which had been "trip leased" to his employer. Plaintiff was the legal owner of the vehicle. Plaintiff was injured driving the vehicle. The vehicle was insured by plaintiff’s employer as well as plaintiff’s personal insurer, Frankenmuth. Plaintiff’s employer went into bankruptcy. The Court held that in that situation, plaintiff’s personal no-fault insurer was responsible for payment of no-fault benefits under §3114(4) of the Act. The Court held that §3114(3) did not control priority of benefits in this case for the reason that the vehicle occupied by the plaintiff-employee was not owned or registered by the employer but was merely leased to the employer. The Court concluded, "Frankenmuth is the next priority insurer under §3114(4)."Once the bankruptcy proceedings involving plaintiff’s employer have been resolved, Frankenmuth may proceed to recoup the benefits paid out to plaintiff under §3115(2)."