Washtenaw County Circuit Court; Docket No. 92-43362-CZ;
Judge Donald E. Shelton; Unpublished
Official Michigan Reporter Citation: Not Applicable; Link to Opinion
In this written Opinion by Judge Shelton, the court determined whether the one year statute of limitations applied to actions for reimbursement by a no-fault insurance company seeking to obtain repayment of benefits it claimed were incorrectly paid to the injured claimant.
In holding that the one year statute of limitations contained in §3145 applied, Judge Shelton reviewed the two conflicting Court of Appeals opinions in this issue, Badger State Mutual Casualty Insurance Company v Auto Owners Insurance Company, 128 Mich App 120 (1983) and Adams v Auto Club Insurance Association, 154 Mich App 186 (1986). The court held that neither opinion is controlling precedent for the court, but the better reasoned of the two cases is the Badger, supra, opinion which held that the one year statute of limitations contained in the no-fault act, §3145, applied to actions for reimbursement by the insurance company.
Judge Shelton held that the Legislature intended that no-fault payments made, or payments unmade, should be final after a year had passed. To carve out an exception to this finality that only operates to benefit one party to the no-fault insurance contract is unfair to the parties and ignores the obvious intent of the Legislature. Therefore, the court held that the one year statute of limitations contained in the no-fault statute applied, rather than the six year statute of limitations contained in the general statutes applicable to common law rights of action.