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Medical Payments Coverage VS. Liability Coverage

Attorney Rivers J. Morrell III

Friday, April 18, 2014

Medical Payments Coverage VS. Liability Coverage
Medical Bills

This recent case, Barnes vs. Western Heritage, discusses these two types of coverages. In this case, an 11 year old boy was injured at an after school activity sponsored by “Shingletown”. Shingletown had liability coverage, and medical payments coverage thru their insurance company, Western Heritage. Medical payments coverage provides for the payment of medical bills when someone is injured on the premises. It does not matter if the person, and/or property owner is negligent. The insurance company paid some of the boy’s medical bills. He then sued Shingletown for negligence. During the litigation, a demand was made for the insurance company to pay some new medical bills that were incurred. The insurance company denied this claim, saying that it was made too late.

The lawsuit against Shingletown proceeded, and settled. The boy then filed a lawsuit against the insurance company, claiming they were wrong in not paying the additional medical bills, when the insurance company said they were too late. The insurance company claimed that since the lawsuit filed against Shingletown had settled, the boy was not entitled to recover anything under the medical payments coverage provision. The appellate court agreed with the boy, and said these two claims were different, and the first lawsuit was against Shingletown, and not the insurance company. The lawsuit against the insurance company was for breach of contract, wherein the boy claimed that the insurance company had breached its contract by not paying the claim under the medical payments provision.

Source: Rivers J. Morell

Note from This article is to be used as an educational guide only and should not be interpreted as a legal consultation. Readers of this article are advised to seek an attorney if a legal consultation is needed. Laws may vary by state and are subject to change, thus the accuracy of this information can not be guaranteed. Readers act on this information solely at their own risk. Neither the author,, or any of its affiliates shall have any liability stemming from this article.

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