A lawsuit, which was filed in Miami Dade, has resulted in an award of $14.5 million against Geico insurance company.
David and Carrie Zucker were involved in a car crash on the Interstate 95 in Miami near the Golden Glades interchange in 2004 when Miguel Gonzalez crashed his car with an 18 wheel oil tanker and then with the Zucker’s car. David Zucker received permanent spinal and other injuries. However, the Gonzalez had no insurance and under the law in Florida, the Zuckers’ insurance policy had a benefit section which requires auto insurers such as Geico to pay the damages owed.
This has not been a good few weeks for Geico as at the beginning of the month a jury in Palm Beach county stated that Geico had acted in bad faith when its customer, James Harvey from West Palm Beach was not protected by them when he was sued by Tracey Potts in a 2006 crash on the Beeline Highway which killed her 51 year old husband.
The verdict means that the $8.5 million has no longer to be paid by Harvey, but instead by Geico and as it was awarded to Potts in 2010, plus interest it is now $9.6 million.
Geico had the opportunity to pay out up to its policy limits at the time of the crash, which was only $100,000, but at the time it did not follow the law, which requires an insurance company to give full cooperation if one of their insured clients is involved in an accident.
They paid the money within days but one of Geico’s loss adjusters refused to allow Potts’ attorney to interview Harvey to see if he had any assets or other insurance which Potts could seize as compensation, and the regulations say that insurers must make their clients available.
Geico hasnow been ordered to pay the $9.6 million plus any more interest which might accrue.
It is understood that Geico might appeal both of the cases.