AGENT DUTIES… ANOTHER CASE IN POINT

As many of you have learned, my involvement in insurance related cases is not based upon my contact representing the plaintiff or the defendant.  Nor is it based upon the party being an insured, an agent, a company representative, or any other position in the transaction.

The Newsletter/Blog before last told of a case where I was for the insurance agent.  In the spirit of “equal time” here is a case where I was for the insured.

This case, involving uninsured motorist coverage, was brought about by the actions (or lack thereof) of an agent we shall call Ms. Non-Technical.  The insured was insurance illiterate and had heavily relied upon her agent of many years to see that her assets were protected.  Previously the insured had been involved in an accident and was aware of how a seemingly small incident can result in a huge financial loss.  She had specifically asked Ms. Non-Technical to see that her insurance coverage was there to protect her assets, and be sure that the limits were “high”.

As a result, Ms. Non-Technical arranged for an umbrella (excess liability) policy “to properly protect her assets”.   Although uninsured motorist coverage was discussed and this coverage was on the primary insurance policy, the agent failed to place this coverage on the new personal umbrella policy.

A few months later the daughter of the insured was killed by a negligent uninsured motorist.   Enter the lawsuit, against the agent!  After examining the details of the relationship between the agent and insured, based on my research and experience, I opined that a proper “Standard of Care” was not met by Ms. Non-Technical.

I strive for my opinions to be unbiased and not based on the contact source.  Naturally, at times I have to tell the contacting attorney, “sorry, hope you will contact me again.”

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Note: Information in these blogs is not intended to replace any legal or financial professional information.

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