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Garcia v. McGuckin

Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle

June 25, 2015

LEOPOLDO LARA GARCIA, Plaintiff,
v.
SARAH MCGUCKIN, BRITTANY WARDEN, GOODYEAR and PROGRESSIVE SPECIALTY INSURANCE CO. (NAIC#32786), Defendants.

Submitted: March 30, 2015

Upon Defendant Progressive Specialty Insurance Company's Motion to Dismiss

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Eric M. Davis, Judge

INTRODUCTION

Plaintiff Leopoldo Lara Garcia filed this action against Defendants Sarah McGuckin, Brittany Warden, Goodyear, and Progressive Specialty Insurance Co. ("Progressive") for personal injuries arising out of a motor vehicle accident that occurred on December 11, 2012. Mr. Lara Garcia does not have the name of the driver who caused the motor vehicle accident and seeks to obtain the name from Progressive.

Progressive Specialty Insurance Company has now filed Defendant Progressive Specialty Insurance Company's Motion to Dismiss (the "Motion"). The Court grants the Motion because Mr. Lara Garcia has not shown that Progressive owes him any legally cognizable duty rising to the level of a legal claim for relief: (i) to reveal the name of the driver who caused the motor vehicle accident; or, (ii) for money damages.

PARTIES CONTENSIONS

Progressive contends that Mr. Lara Garcia lacks standing to bring claims against Progressive who is the alleged liability carrier for the individual co-defendants. Progressive argues that, under Delaware law, a non-party to the insurance agreement cannot maintain a direct action against the insurer.

Mr. Lara Garcia contends that he is not suing Progressive for tortfeasor liability for the bodily injuries that Mr. Lara Garcia suffered. Instead, Mr. Lara Garcia states that he sued Progressive because Progressive has independently sought to harm Mr. Lara Garcia by withholding the names of the alleged tortfeasors.

STANDARD OF REVIEW

In reviewing a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the truthfulness of all well-pleaded allegations in the complaint is to be assumed.[1] The Court must take all well-pled allegations as true and all reasonable inferences must be made in favor of the non-moving party.[2] Further, the Court must give the pleader the benefit of all reasonable inferences that can be drawn from its pleading.[3]

DISCUSSION

Facts

According to the complaint, on December 11, 2012, Mr. Lara Garcia was driving his vehicle in Claymont, Delaware when suddenly a truck operated by an unknown woman hit Mr. Lara Garcia's vehicle from the rear, causing injury to Mr. Lara Garcia. Following the accident, the unidentified woman admitted fault to Mr. Lara Garcia, and provided her insurance information. The insurance information indicated that the unknown driver was insured by Progressive. Mr. Lara Garcia did not obtain the name of the female driver, or ...


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