Insurance company requesting ability to nullify insurance policy

By Kelly Holleran | Mar 1, 2013

An insurance company has filed suit against the driver that it claims was driving a vehicle it had insured when the driver got into a collision. 

Santa Fe Auto Insurance Co. claims it had issued an insurance policy to Mitchell Theodore Bell on his 2001 GMC Sierra. Under the policy, which was in effect from March 4, 2011, until Sept. 3, 2011, Santa Fe agreed to pay for any bodily injuries or property damages caused to the Sierra in a collision.

The insurance company also agreed to defend any insured party in lawsuits filed against him as the result of a collision, according to the complaint filed Feb. 20 in Jefferson County District Court.

On Sept. 2, 2011, defendant Joseph Woodley Sias was driving the Sierra when he was involved in a collision with Michael Anthony Carrier, the suit states. On April 26, 2012, Carrier filed a lawsuit against Sias, the current complaint says.

Even though Sias was driving the Sierra that Santa Fe had insured at the time of the collision, the insurance company claims it should not be required to defend him in court.

“Defendant Sias was an unlisted driver and did not reside with the named insured, non-party, Bell, at the time of the accident,” the suit states. “Further, defendant Sias was also an unlicensed driver according to the police report.”

According to the insurance policy Santa Fe had issued, it would only provide monetary relief and defense aid if the driver involved in the collision was covered and licensed under the policy. Therefore, Santa Fe is requesting a court order that does not require it to pay or defend Sias. It is also seeking costs and other relief the court deems just.

T. Cass Keramidas, Hal Agron, Laura Kemp and Andrew Kuldanek of Keramidas and Associates will be representing it.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Case No. D193-962

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