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Home / Verdicts & Settlements / $13.75M settlement resolves insurance dispute after fatal motorcycle crash

$13.75M settlement resolves insurance dispute after fatal motorcycle crash

An insurance dispute that followed a fatal motorcycle accident was resolved with a $13.75 million settlement, according to attorneys involved in the case.

An employee of a roofing subcontractor was driving a company pickup truck when he crossed the center line of a road and struck a motorcyclist. The rider was transported to a local hospital and ultimately died from her injuries.

The subcontractor was working for a general contractor on residential houses in the Independence area. Both the subcontractor and the driver sought coverage under the general contractor’s commercial liability and umbrella policies.

There was a dispute between the parties regarding the relationship between the general contractor, the roofing subcontractor and the driver, and the purpose for which the pickup truck was being used, which caused a disagreement between the parties regarding coverage under the general contractor’s insurance policies. The roofing subcontractor’s automobile insurance carrier paid its limit to the plaintiffs.

The plaintiffs and the various defendants agreed to arbitrate their dispute, resulting in a $21 million award against the general contractor and the subcontractor and driver. After the court confirmed the award, the plaintiffs filed an equitable garnishment action to collect it, and the defendants filed cross claims against the insurer alleging breach of contract and bad faith.

The settlement ultimately was reached with the general contractor’s insurance carrier.

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$13.75 million settlement

Motor Vehicle Collision, Insurance

Venue: Jackson County Circuit Court

Case Number/Date: Confidential/June 1, 2022

Plaintiff’s Expert: Mark Kempton, Sedalia (insurance)

Caption: Confidential

Plaintiffs’ Attorneys: Tom Hershewe and Tim Dollar, Dollar, Burns, Becker & Hershewe, Kansas City (roofing subcontractor); Tom Dickerson and Chelsea Dickerson, Dickerson Oxton, Kansas City (for plaintiffs); Nick Hinrichs, Hinrichs & Scott, Kansas City (general contractor)

Defendants’ Attorneys: Confidential