Does UM Insurer owe duty to protect wrongful death beneficiaries interest?
Man dies in car wreck and is survived by common-law wife and three adult children from a previous marriage. He has UM which paid full UM benefits to common-law spouse. Was she entitled to full proceeds or are grown children also entitled to some of the UM?
Answer: Look at Forbes v. Shelter Mut. Ins. Co., 1995 OK CIV APP 113, 904 P.2d 159: In a wrongful death situation, UM benefits are to be distributed to those legally entitled to recover as defined by the wrongful death statute in accordance with each claimant's loss, despite conflicting UM policy provisions to the contrary. There, the policy provided under the "General Conditions" that benefits would be paid to the spouse. The Court of Civil Appeals held that, in spite of that provision, the UM went to all persons having a claim under 12 O.S. Sections 1053 and 1054. That would include your adult children.
Posted on Thu, February 17, 2011
by Sharon Coleman filed under