Mineral Wells attorneys who handle underinsured motorist claims need to read this Austin Court of Appeals opinion. It is styled, Johnson v. State Farm Automobile Insurance Company.
This suit arises from a suit brought by Jerry Johnson seeking declarations construing the terms of two insurance policies following an automobile accident in which Jerry’s son, Jacob, was injured while Jerry was driving.
In 2008, Jerry and Jacob were traveling in Colorado in a rented car driven by Jerry when Jerry caused an accident which severely injured his 11 year old son. Jacob. Jacob lived with his parents at the time of the accident and remained in the home until May 29, 2015, when he permanently moved out of the residence. Jerry had an auto policy and an umbrella policy with State Farm. The auto policy contains a provision, the “family member exclusion,” that excludes from liability coverage bodily injury to “any family member, except to the extent of the minimum limits of Liability Coverage required” by the Texas Motor Vehicle Safety-Responsibility Act, which was $25,000 at the time. “Family member” is defined as “a person who is a resident of your household and related to you by blood, marriage, or adoption.” The umbrella policy has a similar provision. Jerry sought coverage under both policies. State Farm refused coverage beyond the $25,000.00 minimum.