There is a new case out in West Virginia that is worth talking about to underscore the differences between West Virginia law and Maryland law. I think the intuition of most victims – and some lawyers – would be that West Virginia law makes more sense and is likely “the way it is.” But the Maryland law is very different.
The plaintiffs were in a car accident. At-fault driver had a $25,000 policy. One plaintiff, the wife, had almost $30,000 in medical bills. Nationwide Insurance offered up the $25,000 policy on behalf of the at-fault driver to that plaintiff.
Thankfully, the plaintiff also had a $250,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist policy with State Farm. When negotiating the underinsurance claim, State Farm argued they should get a credit for the $5,000 that they paid the plaintiff in PIP. Besides the fact that State Farm likes being difficult, they had another basis: West Virginia law. Apparently, West Virginia has a “non-duplication” provision in an insurer’s underinsured motorist (UIM).