THE SIMON LAW FIRM PC SCHOLARSHIP
Write an essay, memorandum of law, or a legal brief detailing your argument for why an independent insurance broker should be legally liable to their customer when they advised the customer to buy "traditional" reducing Underinsured motorist coverage as opposed to added on Underinsured Motorist Coverage. This essay should not exceed 7 pages.
For this application please include the following identifying information:
Year in law school:
Your client is a 25 year old female waitress who was involved in a bad car accident wherein she broke her femur. Her case is agreed to be worth $250,000 as an abstract statement of value. The driver who hit her had insurance coverage of $50,000.
Your client had an independent insurance broker (as opposed to a captive broker for Progressive or Allstate) and had requested the broker get her good insurance coverage for a good price including underinsured motorist coverage. The broker got her a $100,000 liability policy with $100,000 in reducing Underinsured Motorist coverage which was labelled as "traditional coverage" in the literature.
In Georgia, you can have underinsured motorist coverage of the "reducing" variety, that is it gets an offset for the amount of coverage that the at fault driver has. This is the policy that was written so she gets $50,000 from the at fault insurance and $50,000 from her UM insurance ($100,000-$50,000=$50,000)
The better variety of Underinsured Motorist insurance is "added on" or excess insurance where the UM is added on top of the at fault motorists coverage. If that were what she had, she would be able to recover $150,000 in compensation for the injuries and lost work. (Read OCGA Sec. 33-7-11 (D)) The difference in premium payment is $10.00 a year.
Review Georgia cases relating to the duty of an independent insurance agent and discuss in what circumstances the agent would be liable to the injured driver for getting reducing coverage as opposed to added on coverage. What communication would make the broker liable? In what circumstances would they not be? Review J Smith Lanier & Co. v. Southeastern Forge, Inc. 280 Ga 508 (2006) and the Appellate cases that preceded it. Feel free to discuss other Georgia authority on the subject.
Deadline for submission: July 30, 2014
By Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
By US Post at Mailing Address:
Christopher M. Simon
The Simon Law Firm PC
3535 Piedmont Road
Building 14 Suite 410
Atlanta GA 30305