Insurance Company Refuses Coverage for Man Injured on Motorized Scooter
George Veness of Center Line, MI was riding his motorized scooter when he was struck by a vehicle. The accident resulted in serious injuries for Veness because of his condition at the time, which was exacerbated by the accident. His injuries included a torn scrotum, back wounds, neck and back injury, relocation of a preexisting colostomy, stomach hernias and leg circulation problems. In total, Veness has accumulated approximately $2 million in medical bills, but his insurance company is refusing to pay because they claim that his motorized scooter should have been insured as a motor vehicle. The case is currently in court, and if the insurance company wins their argument, the result could mean that all motorized scooter users will be required to insure their scooters.
Insurance Company Contends Motorized Scooter Should be Classified as a Motor Vehicle
Currently, Veness requires another surgery that his doctors says is urgent to save his life. However, Veness is out of funds and the insurance companies involved, State Farm and Farm Bureau, are refusing to budge on the matter. According to attorneys for the companies, the motorized scooter that Veness was riding on should be categorized as a motorized vehicle under Michigan’s No-Fault Act. Specifically, attorneys stated: “Plaintiff’s mobility scooter was a motor vehicle because it was operated on a public highway by a power other than muscular and it has four wheels”.
Auto Accident Takes Away Man’s Independence
Veness’s injuries originally occurred in 2004 on an on-the-job accident where he fell from a roof and was paralyzed from the waist down. Despite these life-altering injuries, Veness had plans to travel to Texas to visit his grandchildren this summer prior to the accident, and maintained much of his independence thanks to his motorized scooter. He required care about three times per week prior to the accident but now requires round-the-clock care. Needless to say, the recent auto accident worsened Veness’s preexisting condition, to the point where he and his doctors say that he is dying slowly. Attorneys for Veness say that the insurance companies’ claims that Veness’s motorized scooter should have been insured as a motor vehicle are ludicrous and unfair, considering that many motorized scooter users are on fixed incomes and would have to reach farther into their pockets to insure an additional “vehicle” vital to their ability to get around.
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.