State's high court rules for insurer in tragic hit-and-run

LANSING (AP) -- The Michigan Supreme Court says an insurance company doesn't have to pay benefits in a hit-and-run case because the incident wasn't reported within 30 days.

The court's conservative majority overturned a decision by the state appeals court Wednesday and said unambiguous contract language has meaning. William DeFrain of Redford Township suffered severe head injuries when he was struck by a car while walking in May 2008.

DeFrain had insurance in case he was in an accident with someone who was uninsured. But the notice to State Farm about the hit-and-run was two months late. DeFrain was in intensive care part of that time and subsequently died.

The appeals court had ruled in favor of DeFrain, saying State Farm wasn't harmed by the late report.

Published: Fri, Jun 1, 2012

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