Evidence to Determine Rejection of Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Which Evidence Should Be Considered to Determine If a Valid Rejection of Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage Has Occurred ?
In Hollon v. Clary (2004), 104 Ohio St.3d 526, 2004 Ohio 6772, 820 N.E.2d 881, the Supreme Court of Ohio drastically changed which evidence can be considered by a court in determining whether a valid rejection of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage had occurred.
Specifically, evidence of the offer no longer had to be included in the rejection form; rather, evidence of the offer of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage could be shown with extrinsic evidence.
Furthermore, the Hollon case defined what constituted a "meaningful offer" as follows:
The Linko requirements are a means to an end. They were chosen to insure that insurers make meaningful offers. a "meaningful offer" is "an offer that is an offer in substance and not just in name" that "allows an insured to make an express, knowing rejection of UM/UIM coverage." Though Twin City's written offer, per se, did not satisfy all the Linko requirements, we will not elevate form over substance or ignore the expressed intent of the parties to a contract. Hollon, at 529.
In Hollon, Twin City's offer did not state the applicable premiums, but the offer did describe the coverage and expressly stated the coverage limits. Hollon, at 527.
However, the employer's co-owner stated that before signing the rejection forms of UM/UIM coverage, he was aware of the applicable premiums and understood he was rejecting UM/UIM coverage in its entirety. Id.