Bell v. Progressive Direct InsuranceAnnotate this Case
Petitioner was injured in a car accident while riding as a passenger in a vehicle driven by a co-employee. The liability limits of the at-fault driver were tendered, and there was no underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage on the vehicle in which he was riding. Therefore, Petitioner submitted a claim for UIM benefits under a Progressive insurance policy, issued to Sarah Severn. At the time of the accident, Petitioner resided with Severn and their child. He described Severn as "his on again off again fiancé." Both Petitioner's and Severn's names appear on the Declarations Page of the Policy under the heading "Drivers and household residents." Under the heading "Additional information," Severn is listed as the "Named insured." Progressive denied UIM coverage to Petitioner under Part III of the Policy. According to the affidavit filed by Progressive's Claims Injury Operations Manager, "[t]he claim was denied because [Petitioner] did not fall within the terms, provisions and conditions of [the Policy] to qualify for benefits under the [UIM] provisions," as Petitioner "was only listed as a 'driver' on the policy and not a named insured, nor was he a resident relative of the named insured." The Supreme Court granted Bell's petition for review of the court of appeals' decision affirming the circuit court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Progressive Direct Insurance Company. Finding no reversible error, the Supreme Court affirmed.