Knowing which parties to include in a lawsuit and ensuring that you have alleged the right causes of action against each party can be difficult, especially if you recently experienced a car accident resulting in Alabama personal injuries for the first time. At The Reeves Law Firm, we have handled numerous car accidents on behalf of Decatur and Huntsville residents and have the experience it takes to ensure that your lawsuit is approached carefully and thoroughly.
A recent case discusses a situation where a party sought leave to amend its complaint to add a different defendant. In that case, a woman suffered injuries in a car accident. She had an insurance policy that included underinsured-motorist (UIM) benefits. The woman notified her insurer that she and other driver’s insurer had settled her claim against that driver for the driver’s policy limits of $25,000. The woman’s own insurer did not consent to the settlement and paid the woman $25,000. The woman then died. Her insurer brought a claim against the other driver seeking reimbursement of the $25,000 in UIM benefits that it had paid to its own insured.
The other driver filed a motion to dismiss, or for summary judgment in the alternative, alleging that because the woman had died her personal injury claim was exhausted and that her insurer could not maintain a claim against the other driver because it sued as a subrogee of the woman. The UIM insurer disputed this claim and argued that the claim survived the woman’s passing and that it had a right of reimbursement from the other driver’s insurer, not from the other driver as an individual. The insurer sought leave to amend its complaint to add the other driver’s insurer as a defendant, which the trial court did not rule on.