Bush, the plaintiff appealed a summary judgment entered in favor of State Farm.
The Second DCA reversed based upon the Florida Supreme Court’s decision in
State Farm Mutual Auto. Ins. Co. v. Curran, 135 So. 3d 1071 (Fla. 2014).
The plaintiff was involved in an automobile accident. When her auto insurer
denied her claim for uninsured/underinsured motorist benefits, she filed
suit against her insurer seeking payment for expenses incurred from orthopedic
injuries she alleged resulted from the accident. State Farm later served
a notice of medical examination under Fla. R. Civ. P. 1.360. The plaintiff
objected to the examination and requested various protections. State Farm
did not agree to the plaintiff’s demands. The plaintiff did not
appear at the examination. Based on the plaintiff’s failure to appear
at the examination, State Farm added a defense of “no coverage”
to its pleadings. State Farm moved for summary judgment arguing the plaintiff
forfeited coverage by breaching the policy’s terms. The trial court
entered summary judgment in State Farm’s favor.
Bush was on appeal, the Florida Supreme Court issued its opinion in
Curran, in which the court held that an insured’s failure to comply with
an insurance policy’s compulsory medical examination clause did
not result in automatic forfeiture of coverage. The
Curran court ruled that a compulsory medical examination provision in the uninsured/underinsured
motorist context is a post-loss obligation of the insured and is not a
condition precedent to coverage.
Curran requires a finding of prejudice to the insurer before coverage may be denied.
No finding of prejudice was made in
Bush, given that the trial court ruled before
Curran was rendered. As such, the Second DCA reversed.