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Fleeing police at speeds topping 100 mph, Richard Gibbons crossed into oncoming traffic, blasted through stop signs and fishtailed around corners before his pickup smashed into Greg and Maribel Tanner's car in an intersection east of town.

The 1999 wreck left 7-year-old Roney Tanner comatose for a week, in the hospital for a month and in physical therapy for five years.

Gibbons, charged with using his red Ford F-350 truck as a deadly weapon, jumped bail and disappeared.

However, he left behind a $300,000 auto insurance policy, money the Tanners hoped would pay for their son's medical bills.

But Gibbons' carrier, Nationwide Insurance , declined to pay, saying Gibbons violated his insurance contract by leading police on a wild chase all but guaranteed to end in a horrific wreck.

Two courts have agreed with Nationwide.

http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/11/28/1128tanner.html
 

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Appalachian American
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As unjust as it seems, they are in the right. The insurance policy is there to protect the one buying the insurance from liability, not to provide damages to the victims. Gibbons violated the law and is therefore liable for the damages he caused. He also violated the terms of his contract with Nationwide, which means they are no longer obligated to protect him from the liability.
 

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So the rest of us and the family who were injured get to pick up the bills?

Uh, no. This man didn't intentionally cause an 'accident'. Was he careless? Obviously. But this is the risk insurance companies take when they insure people. They're happy to take the man's money though, weren't they? If he has coverage for bodily injury - they should pay it.

Texas. Only in Texas. :lookout:
 

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Appalachian American
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So the rest of us and the family who were injured get to pick up the bills?

Uh, no. This man didn't intentionally cause an 'accident'. Was he careless? Obviously. But this is the risk insurance companies take when they insure people. They're happy to take the man's money though, weren't they? If he has coverage for bodily injury - they should pay it.

Texas. Only in Texas. :lookout:
If Nationwide had a clause in their contract that gets them off the hook if the vehicle was being used illegally, then they didn't take that risk, and they have no obligation to pay in Texas or anywhere else.
 

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If Nationwide had a clause in their contract that gets them off the hook if the vehicle was being used illegally, then they didn't take that risk, and they have no obligation to pay in Texas or anywhere else.
Than why do we have mandated car insurance policies? This is the exact reason why everyone has to pay for car insurance. Uninsured, irresponsible drivers were causing undue harm to a lot of people and property.

Why don't we just nuke the insurance industry altogether? They get better and better and suckering the government into mandating a product, and then cutting back on, or taking back the promises to cover incidents like this later down the road.

These clauses in a product they've lobbied the government to mandate need to be made illegal. They want to force us to buy their product, then cover the accidents without costing everybody millions to fight over it.

GAH! I despise insurance companies with a passion. :flame:
 

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Appalachian American
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Than why do we have mandated car insurance policies? This is the exact reason why everyone has to pay for car insurance. Uninsured, irresponsible drivers were causing undue harm to a lot of people and property.

Why don't we just nuke the insurance industry altogether? They get better and better and suckering the government into mandating a product, and then cutting back on, or taking back the promises to cover incidents like this later down the road.

These clauses in a product they've lobbied the government to mandate need to be made illegal. They want to force us to buy their product, then cover the accidents without costing everybody millions to fight over it.

GAH! I despise insurance companies with a passion. :flame:
I seriously doubt there is any way that the government can mandate that an insurance company has to cover the insured for liability incurred while engaging in illegal activity.

The policy was intended to protect the insured from liability, not to protect other motorists from the insured's actions. The insurance company has a right to limit their exposure if the insured deliberately uses the vehicle in a way that is likely to result in damages. Gibbons has no right to expect protection from the liability that he deliberately incurred. The victims have every right to seek damages from Gibbons, but not from Nationwide.
 

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I smell a new policy proposal to get more money out of insured individuals = illegal motor vehicle operations coverage.

:flame:

The government DOES mandate car insurance coverage - expressly for paying the damages of injured parties.

This is the insurance companies' way of wiggling out of that responsibility. They always find a way.

If they want to force a product down our throats, jack up the costs of said product, than they need to be FORCED by our JUDGES to PONY UP if and when the time comes. That doesn't include writing in 'illegal operations of motor vehicles' into the policies.

This should not be allowed. Whose side are these judges on anyway? Oh, don't bother answering, I already know - big business.
 

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Appalachian American
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I smell a new policy proposal to get more money out of insured individuals = illegal motor vehicle operations coverage.

:flame:

The government DOES mandate car insurance coverage - expressly for paying the damages of injured parties.

This is the insurance companies' way of wiggling out of that responsibility. They always find a way.

If they want to force a product down our throats, jack up the costs of said product, than they need to be FORCED by our JUDGES to PONY UP if and when the time comes. That doesn't include writing in 'illegal operations of motor vehicles' into the policies.

This should not be allowed. Whose side are these judges on anyway? Oh, don't bother answering, I already know - big business.
Requiring an insurance company to cover damages incurred during deliberate illegal activity is literally requiring them to subsidize that activity, and makes them an accomplice. If that were done, everyone's rates would go through the roof because of the exposure that the insurance companies would have.
 

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Why should the auto insurer be different from say a life insurance company that will not pay out if you take you own life, do drugs enough to kill you, or a number of things. If you are going to treat the car illegally which in this case was driving like a mad man, why the heck Should Nationwide Pay, I bet there IS a clause in the policy that addresses just this issue.~! And that is why the judges agreed with Nationwide. That they did not have to pay in such a case as this. And it has nothing to do with do separate judges and big companies.
 

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Requiring an insurance company to cover damages incurred during deliberate illegal activity is literally requiring them to subsidize that activity, and makes them an accomplice. If that were done, everyone's rates would go through the roof because of the exposure that the insurance companies would have.
Say what? Why shouldn't an insurance company be required to pay up an obligation when the time comes? You have to pay the IRS when the time comes, the light bill, the car insurance bill, the medical bill, it's they're turn to pay up, and they tie up the courts and tax payer dollars with this insanity.

Surely they have some decency? I, nevermind, we're talking about an insurance company here.

Which I despise, with a passion, and would cheer the day they are no longer traded on Wall Street.

Socialize costs, privatize profits. Why not? All the other Wall Street firms do.

Enjoy your tax increases to cover the costs associated. It's you are paying the bills for this, and the fight over it in the court system. If people could only do the decent thing in this world, the rest of us would have a lot more for ourselves as well. But no, too many out there wasting our money running from their responsibilities.

You know, as well as I, this man will never in his short lifetime earn enough to cover their medical costs. And he didn't intentionally cause the accident. I'll bet there are more high speed car chases that end without an accident than that do.
 

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Appalachian American
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You know, as well as I, this man will never in his short lifetime earn enough to cover their medical costs. And he didn't intentionally cause the accident. I'll bet there are more high speed car chases that end without an accident than that do.
He knew that too, which is why he should not have engaged in behavior that was likely to result in an accident.

Obviously he didn't intend to have the accident, his goal was to elude the police. He did, however, deliberately engage in illegal activity using his vehicle; an act which greatly increased his chances of having an accident and causing harm to others. That nullified the contract that he had with his insurance company to protect him from liability.

The insurance company is entirely justified in refusing to protect him from that liability. They have no legal or moral obligation to pay in that case. It's not a matter of "decency", it's a matter of a legally binding contract.

Nationwide didn't engage in a police chase, and they didn't cause anyone to sustain injuries. The insurance company is not the bad guy in this case.
 

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He knew that too, which is why he should not have engaged in behavior that was likely to result in an accident.

Obviously he didn't intend to have the accident, his goal was to elude the police. He did, however, deliberately engage in illegal activity using his vehicle; an act which greatly increased his chances of having an accident and causing harm to others. That nullified the contract that he had with his insurance company to protect him from liability.

The insurance company is entirely justified in refusing to protect him from that liability. They have no legal or moral obligation to pay in that case. It's not a matter of "decency", it's a matter of a legally binding contract.

Nationwide didn't engage in a police chase, and they didn't cause anyone to sustain injuries. The insurance company is not the bad guy in this case.
Well, if anyone runs a redlight or stop sign, then that to is illegal past that point and if an accident occurs because of it,are you saying that the driver that broke the law,their ins is no longer liable?
 

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I wonder if the victims had uninsured motorist coverage which refused to pay because the criminal "was" insured?
 

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DeaconJim
Then I can assume that You also believe that when a firearm is STOLEN and used in a crime , that the Owner and Manufacturer , Should Not Be held Responsible .
And they should win any law suits against them , that shouldn't even be filed under this theory .
Bob
 

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Keeping the Dream Alive
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Down here we are required to have 'Third Party Insurance' to register a car. That's to provide for anybody, other than the driver, who is injured by a vehicle.
(Some companies will also cover the driver.)
Next, you have 'Third Party Property Insurance' which will cover damage to other vehicles or property, but not that of the driver.
Finally there is 'Comprehensive Insurance' which will also cover damage to your own vehicle.
Although Third Party Property and Comprehensive insurance is optional, you'd have to be a complete idiot not to have at least the Third Party cover.
 

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Appalachian American
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Well, if anyone runs a redlight or stop sign, then that to is illegal past that point and if an accident occurs because of it,are you saying that the driver that broke the law,their ins is no longer liable?
Not being an attorney, I don't know the details of how the laws are set up, but I would assume there is a distinction made between traffic violations and gross criminal behavior.
 

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Appalachian American
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DeaconJim
Then I can assume that You also believe that when a firearm is STOLEN and used in a crime , that the Owner and Manufacturer , Should Not Be held Responsible .
And they should win any law suits against them , that shouldn't even be filed under this theory .
Bob
You assume correctly, sir.
 

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..where do YOU look?
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I would ask, "Where is the Tanner's insurance company"?
 

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Then I can assume that You also believe that when a firearm is STOLEN and used in a crime , that the Owner and Manufacturer, should Not Be held Responsible.
You believe the owner and manufacturer SHOULD be held responsible? Just want to make sure I understand your comment.
 

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This situation is terrible; however, had this man Gibbons been running away from police on foot and grabbed the boy holding a gun to his head which then went off resulting in similar hospital stays and PT, who would be responsible? The person. The car in this case was merely an instrument, like the gun would have been. If the gun had been insured under Mr. Gibbons homeowners' insurance, would the family then be looking to that company for restitution? Probably not. Probably wouldn't even think about insurance in that case.

Though it sometimes seems cruel and unfair, if a victim of crime in this country wants restitution, they must look to the CRIMINAL, and not the inanimate objects used by that criminal. Perhaps if judgements could be levied against those convicted that included financial restitution enforced through garnishment of wages, etc. and NOT allowed to be dismissed by bankruptcy (IRS debts are not dismissed, criminal restitution judgements should not be either), that would be fair? Hard to say.

I'm just glad the boy survived at all.
 
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