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Appeals court rules wrong state law applied in truck crash, but result is same

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A trial court erroneously applied Georgia law in a lawsuit brought by a truck driver injured in a collision in West Virginia, but correctly applied Indiana law yielded the same result, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday.

The panel unanimously held that an Allen Superior judge erred when he applied Georgia law because the trucking company that employed the plaintiff was based there. In Derek Asklar and Pauline Asklar v. David Gilb, Paul Garrett Smith d/b/a P.H. One Trucking, Empire Fire and Marine Ins. Co., d/b/a Zurich; Travelers Ideminity Co. of America, 02A03-1204-CT-170, the panel agreed Indiana law applied because Derek Asklar was driving a truck registered and principally garaged here.

Asklar was driving a truck registered to Werner Trucking and was stopped at the bottom of an interstate exit ramp when his rig was struck by a driver for One Trucking. Asklar and several others were injured; Asklar has been unable to return to work as a result, the ruling said.

Asklar attempted to recover under Werner’s underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage with Empire, but the company had elected to maintain coverage of $75,000 rather than the required $5 million.  

Indiana law requires the amount of uninsured/underinsured coverage must be “at least equal to the limits of liability specified in the bodily injury liability provisions of an insured’s policy, unless such coverages have been rejected in writing by the insured.” The court ruled that Werner clearly had done so.

“We therefore find that the trial court did not err in granting summary judgment to Empire and finding that its (uninsured/underinsured) coverage limit was $75,000,” Judge Nancy Vaidik wrote for the court.     
 

 

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  1. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  2. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  3. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  4. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  5. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

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