Newsletters

Auto Coverage for Mass Transit Vehicles

Mass transit vehicles such as buses play an important role in carrying out the necessary activity of enabling the residents of the United States to conduct their public and private business. The sheer volume of human activity involved in mass transit operations, and the number and types of vehicles employed in mass transit around the country, create numerous issues related to the motor vehicle insurance aspects of the mass transit business.

"Escape Clauses" in Automobile Insurance Policies

An automobile insurance policy may have a provision for "other insurance." When more than one insurance policy provides coverage for a loss, the "other insurance" clause can limit an insurance company's liability by defining the priority in which the policy should pay an insured's claim. There are three types of "other insurance" clauses: (1) pro rata; (2) excess; and (3) escape.

Insurer's Duty to Fully Investigate an Insured's Claim

An insurance company has a duty to fully investigate an insured's claim for benefits before denying it. A thorough investigation and fair evaluation of an insured's claim requires an insurance company to examine the insured's proof of loss statement and supporting documents. Further, the insurance company cannot ignore evidence that is available to it which supports the claim. That is, the insurance company cannot focus only on the facts that would justify its denial of the claim.

Obligation to Cooperate in Motor Vehicle Insurance

Most automobile insurance policies have a clause that requires an insured to cooperate with the insurance company. The cooperation clause, also known as the cooperation and assistance provision, requires an insured to act in a manner that does not obstruct an insurance company's handling of a claim against an insurance policy. Further, the cooperation clause seeks to stop insureds and claimants from acting together against insurance companies. To breach the cooperation clause, an insured's obstructive conduct must be willful and must prejudice the insurance company.

Trailer Exclusions in Auto Insurance

There are all kinds of trailers. There are mobile home trailers, boat hauling trailers, car hauling trailers, horse trailers, and campers. Some automobile insurance policies exclude all trailers from coverage. Some permit coverage of a trailer only if it is designed for use with a private passenger automobile and is described in the insurance policy. Commercial truck trailers and semi-trailers have their own insurance needs and are beyond the scope of this article.

White, Graham, Buckley & Carr L.L.C.
- Independence Main Office -
(all postal mail should be mailed to this office)
19049 E Valley View Pkwy
Independence, MO. 64055
TEL: (816) 373-9080
FAX: (816) 373-9319

- Kansas City office -
3145 Broadway
Kansas City, MO  64111
TEL: (816) 931-9080
FAX: (816) 373-9319