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Keller v Citizens Insurance Company of America; (COA-UNP, 12/14/1992; RB #1589)


Michigan Court of Appeals Docket No.136376; Unpublished  
Judges Sullivan, MacKenzie, and I. B. Torres; Unanimous; Per Curiam  
Official Michigan Reporter Citation:  Not Applicable; Link to Opinion alt   

Entitlement to PIP Benefits: Arising Out of / Causation Requirement [§3105(1)]  
PIP Benefits for Bystander Psychological Injuries [3105(1)]

Not Applicable   

In this per curiam unpublished Opinion, the Court of Appeals held that the no-fault act does not provide for payment of psychiatric treatment expenses incurred by the mother of a boy who was killed by a motor vehicle. 

In this case, the claimant was in her home, heard the sound of screeching tires, and when she went outside saw her boy's body lying near the roadway. She subsequently underwent psychiatric care as the result of her son's death. The trial court, relying on Williams v Citizens Mutual Insurance Company of America, 94 Mich App 762 (1980) (Item No. 267), concluded that defendant properly denied coverage for these expenses.  

In affirming the trial court's decision, the Court of Appeals held that in this case the plaintiff’s injury did not arise out of the ownership, operation, maintenance or use of a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle. As in Williams, supra, the injury arose out of the death of the child which in turn arose out of the operation of a motor vehicle. The court held that in this case, the mother's injury would have been the same had the boy's death arisen from an attacking dog or from a stray bullet. Consequently, the claimant was not entitled to payment of her psychiatric treatment expenses because those expenses were outside the scope of coverage intended by §3105.  

Lansing car accident lawyer Stephen Sinas is the lead editor of the appellate case summaries published on this site regarding the Michigan auto insurance law. To learn more about how Stephen Sinas and how the Sinas Dramis Law Firm can help you if you have been injured in a Michigan auto accident, visit

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