gavel.gif (3462 bytes) Policy language prohibiting UIM benefits for truck passenger is void, court rules

� A copy of the court�s opinion in Ziatyk is available free to PaTLA members by contacting Craig Giangiulio of the Philadelphia office ( [email protected] ).

On Feb. 27, 2002, the Pennsylvania Superior Court in Prudential v. Ziatyk found that the trial court in Lehigh County committed an error of law when it held that the plaintiff was not entitled to UIM benefits under a motor vehicle policy issued to her husband by Prudential because a rental truck she was a passenger in at the time of her accident was not a �car� as defined by the Prudential policy. 

Prudential argued that the policy provided UIM coverage only when she was a passenger in a �car� or where she was a pedestrian struck by a motor vehicle. The court found that the policy language was an attempt to restrict benefits required by law to be offered to Pennsylvania insureds and is void as directly contrary to the requirements of section 1731 of the MVFRL. 

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