When Is A Vehicle Uninsured?

Fort Worth insurance lawyers need to be able to answer the above question.
Texomashomepage.com published an article January 30, that would make you wonder about the answer. The title of the article is, “Woman Fights Back After Denied Coverage When Struck By Vehicle.”
The article tells us that if you own a vehicle, it’s the law to have insurance coverage.
And while there are different levels of coverage, if you’re in an accident does your insurance company have your back?
Well a Young county woman found out– the hard way insurance coverage doesn’t always cover you.
After paying monthly premiums to her insurance company, Brenda Nolen thought she was covered after a vehicle rear ended her car nearly two years ago.
And Nolen quickly found out that was not the case.
And now, she’s battling for what she says is rightfully hers.
It was an accident which changed Brenda Nolen’s life.
Captured by a gas stations security camera you can see her ’97 dodge pick up thrust into a gas tank and going up in flames.
That was almost two years ago, on April 17, 2011.
“I still have nightmares over that wreck,” she said.
And her nightmare continues because to this day she’s still without a car and has a stack of medical bills from surgeries and a neck injury she suffered during the crash.
And she says it’s all because her insurance company won’t pay.
Nolen was rear ended by a Texas Forest Service employee.
Since the crash happened while that employee was on the job, the state’s Homeland Security Act says the agency is immune from the damage caused in the accident.
But Nolen’s attorney says that’s not why the law was implemented.
“The purpose of that act was to increase command and control amongst our local emergency responders and they are asserting that these laws apply to every situation where a Texas Forest Service employee injures someone or kills them,” Patrick Scott said, an attorney from the Altman Legal Group.
According to the police report the Texas Forest Service employee had fallen asleep at the wheel and failed to control his speed.
But under the Homeland Security Act, the State Forest Service is still not liable.
So Nolen then filed under the uninsured motorist portion of her own automobile policy through state farm but, “they said they would not pay her because she had been hit by a government vehicle and it didn’t matter that the government vehicle by the Texas Forest Service is refusing to pay her claim, State Farm also said that they don’t have to pay her claim,” Scott said.
He says because it’s a government vehicle, State Farm says they don’t have to pay and it’s part of their written exclusions.
And though it’s been a long journey for Nolen seeking what she says is rightfully hers, her fight continues and she has faith it will eventually end in her favor.
Nolen’s suits are currently pending in the 90th district court in Young county.
In this case, it would be interesting for an experienced insurance law attorney to see exactly what the wording is in the insurance policy is, that State Farm is relying on in it’s refusal to pay the claim.
Texas Insurance Code, Section 1952.102, does allow the insurance company to define “uninsured motor vehicle.” But that definition should be subject to close scrutiny by the Texas Courts and the Texas Department of Insurance.

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