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Tucker v State Farm Automobile Insurance Company and Vance Agency; (COA-UNP, 4/7/2000; RB #2133)

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Michigan Court of Appeals; Docket No. 209675; Unpublished   
Judges Cavanagh, Holbrook, and Kelly; Unanimous; Per Curiam   
Official Michigan Reporter Citation:  Not Applicable; Link to Opinion alt   


STATUTORY INDEXING:      
Compulsory Insurance Requirements for Owners or Registrants of Motor Vehicles Required to Be Registered [§3101(1)]   
Disqualification for Uninsured Owners or Registrants of Involved Motor Vehicles or Motorcycles [§3113(b)]

TOPICAL INDEXING:   
Uninsured Motorist Benefits: Uninsured Motorist Coverage in General     
Michigan Auto Insurance Placement Facility (MAIPF – MCL 500.3301, et seq.)   
Insurance Agents (Duty to Insured)   


CASE SUMMARY:      
In this unanimous unpublished per curiam Opinion, the Court of Appeals held that there was no insurance coverage for plaintiffs claim of no-fault benefits and uninsured motorist coverage where the insurance agent sent the application materials to the wrong insurance company, and prior to correction of the mistake and issuance of an insurance policy by State Farm, plaintiff had been injured in a motor vehicle accident.

Plaintiff contacted the Vance Agency, an independent broker with no contractual relationship with State Farm, to add her car to her mother's automobile policy. Plaintiff paid a $400 deposit and received a temporary Michigan Automobile Insurance Placement Facility Certificate of Insurance good for 60 days, effective September 11,1995, one day prior to plaintiffs accident on September 12,1995. The MAIPF is a statutory scheme for insuring otherwise uninsurable drivers. Under this scheme, the insurance agency, Vance, was the producer of the certificate of insurance. The forms used to request the insurance coverage from State Farm clearly indicated that Vance was not acting as an agent of any insurance company. After Vance had incorrectly sent the form to Citizens Insurance Company and then later to State Farm, State Farm issued a policy of insurance effective September 15,1995. The Court of Appeals, in finding that there was no insurance coverage with State Farm, relied on Auto-Owners Insurance Company v Michigan Mutual Insurance Company, 223 Mich App 205 (1997), which held that because Michigan Mutual had issued no policy at the time of the accident, and because the agency had no "implied or apparent authority to bind Michigan Mutual to immediate coverage," there was no effective policy as of the date of the accident. In the instant case, since there was no policy in effect on the date of the accident, State Farm was not liable.

 

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