Academic journal article Journal of Risk and Insurance

Uninsured Motorist - Limitations of Actions

Academic journal article Journal of Risk and Insurance

Uninsured Motorist - Limitations of Actions

Article excerpt

Kraly v. Vannewkirk, 635 N.E.2d 323 (Ohio 1994)

On June 4, 1988, Mark and Mary Lou Kraly were involved in an automobile accident with a vehicle driven by the defendant, Vannewkirk. The Kralys alleged they suffered bodily injuries as a result of the accident. On December 26, 1989, they filed suit against Vannewkirk. On January 2, 1990, the Vannewkirks' liability insurer (Cadillac Insurance Company) was declared insolvent. On March 5, 1990, the Kralys' attorney contacted the claims representative of State Farm and discussed the Kralys' claim for uninsured motorist coverage. On July 5, 1990, the State Farm claims representative sent a letter to the Kralys' attorney indicating that State Farm was denying uninsured motorist coverage because the Kralys had failed to commence an arbitration or suit against State Farm within two years from the date of the accident.

The issue before the Ohio Supreme Court was whether an action against State Farm was barred because the State Farm policy required arbitration or suit against State Farm to commence within two years following the accident. The accident occurred June 4, 1988, and the amended pleading adding State Farm as a defendant was not filed until August 3, 1990.

State Farm cited prior Ohio case law that had found that the basis for recovery under uninsured motorist coverage is founded in contract and not in tort. …

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