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Lukk v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.

Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle

August 27, 2014

COTTY JAAK LUKK, Plaintiff,
v.
STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY, Defendant.

Submitted: July 29, 2014

Corrected: August 29, 2014 [*]

Joseph J. Longobardi, III, Esquire, Longobardi & Boyle, LLC, Wilmington, Delaware, Attorney for Plaintiff.

Patrick G. Rock, Esquire, Heckler & Frabizzio, Wilmington, Delaware, Attorney for Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

PAUL R. WALLACE, JUDGE

I. Introduction

Plaintiff Cotty Jaak Lukk ("Mr. Lukk") has filed this claim against State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company ("State Farm") for breach of contract for failing to pay personal injury protection ("PIP").[1] Mr. Lukk says he is due these benefits under his father's State Farm insurance policy (the "Policy").[2] Mr. Lukk argues that he is entitled to PIP coverage under the Policy because he is a member of his father's household.[3] Mr. Lukk has moved for summary judgment, urging, inter alia, the Court to interpret the Policy's no-fault coverage language as including him as a contemplated insured.[4]

State Farm argues that Mr. Lukk is due no benefits under his father's Policy because: (1) he is not an "Insured"—while he is an immediate family member of his father's, State Farm claims Mr. Lukk has a "separate household"; and (2) Mr. Lukk failed to submit medical expenses and bills to State Farm within two years as required by the Policy and 21 Del. C. § 2118.[5] For the following reasons, Mr. Lukk's and State Farm's cross-Motions for Summary Judgment are DENIED.

II. Factual and Procedural Background [6]

On June 6, 2010, Mr. Lukk was seriously injured in an accident that took place in Indiana County, Pennsylvania while he was the passenger in a friend's truck. Mr. Lukk's friend was liable for the one-vehicle accident and Mr. Lukk collected the $35, 000.00 policy limit from his friend's insurance company. He then made a claim for PIP coverage through the Policy.[7] The no-fault Policy language in question states:

Insured means:
1.any person while occupying or injured in an accident as a pedestrian by your car or a newly acquired car, if registered in Delaware; and
2. you [Mr. Lukk's father] or any member of your household while occupying or injured in an accident as a pedestrian by any other land motor vehicle designed for use on public highways and which is not:
a. Operated on rails or tracks; or b. Owned by or furnished for the regular use of you or any member of your household.
Member of your household means:
1. Members of your immediate family who have no separate ...

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