My client caused a serious accident in which one of the occupants of the other vehicle died. GEICO insured my client with bodily injury liability limits of $10,000 per person / $20,000 per accident. The estate for the deceased party agreed that it would accept GEICO’s $10,000 limits as full and final settlement of all claims if GEICO agreed to pay them.
GEICO refused to pay, denied the claim and filed a declaratory judgment action seeking a declaration that there was no coverage under the policy because of an alleged misrepresentation in the presentation of the claim. The estate for the deceased victim filed a wrongful death lawsuit against GEICO which GEICO agreed to defend under a reservation of rights.
I rejected the defense under a reservation of rights, and then settled the case with the estate.
Then, in the declaratory judgment action, I and GEICO filed cross motions for summary judgment on the coverage issue. The trial court ruled in our favor, finding that GEICO had waived its coverage defenses by failing to comply with Florida’s Claims Administration Statute. I previously wrote on the summary judgment order at https://www.floridainsuranceblog.com/2010/03/articles/claims-administration-statute/geico-waives-coverage-defenses-by-failing-to-comply-with-the-claims-administration-statute/index.html
Yesterday, I filed suit against GEICO for breach of contract and bad faith failure to settle. The damages being sought in this new lawsuit are the excess judgment damages that resulted from the settlement with the estate.