Man seeks insurance payout after crash with underinsured driver

Kelly Holleran Mar. 9, 2010, 9:13am

A Jefferson County man claims his insurance company denied his claim for underinsured motorist benefits after an underinsured driver struck him.

Charles Freeman filed a lawsuit March 1 in Jefferson County District Court against State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company.

Freeman claims he became involved in an automobile collision with Dustin Hoffpauir on May 5, 2007, while driving west in the 3600 block of East Lucas in Beaumont. Hoffpauir, who also drove west slightly ahead of Freeman in an adjacent lane, changed lanes and suddenly hit Freeman's driver's side, according to the complaint.

Because of the accident, Freeman sustained injuries to his left shoulder, arm and body; incurred medical costs; and experienced extreme physical pain, suffering and mental anguish, the suit states.

Freeman blames Hoffpauir for causing the accident, saying he failed to keep a proper lookout, failed to control his speed, failed to drive in a safe manner and failed to change lanes in a safe manner.

At the time of the accident, State Farm had issued an automobile policy to Freeman, which included benefits for uninsured and underinsured motorist protection and other medical benefits, the complaint says. So, after the collision, Freeman alleges he filed a claim for personal injury protection and underinsured motorist protection benefits.

However, State Farm has failed to respond to Freeman's claim.

In his complaint, Freeman seeks an unspecified judgment, plus pre- and post-judgment interest, attorney's fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Brandon P. Monk of The Monk Law Firm in Port Arthur will be representing him.

The case has been assigned to Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th District Court.

Jefferson County District Court case number: B186-145.

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