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Quick v. Michigan Millers Mut. Ins. Co.

SEPTEMBER 9, 1969.

MORRIS QUICK, ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF DALE G. QUICK, DECEASED, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,

v.

MICHIGAN MILLERS MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANY, A CORPORATION, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Lake County, Nineteenth Judicial Circuit; the Hon. LLOYD A. VAN DEUSEN, Judge, presiding. Judgment affirmed.

MR. JUSTICE DAVIS DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT.

Morris Quick, Administrator of the Estate of Dale G. Quick, deceased, brought this suit against the defendant seeking to recover under the terms of an insurance policy which he, individually, had with the defendant. The policy contained the following provisions:

"The company will pay all reasonable medical expense incurred within one year from date of accident for bodily injury caused by accident and sustained by

"(1) The named insured or a relative . . .

"(c) through being struck by a highway vehicle;

"The company will pay all sums which the insured or his legal representative shall be legally entitled to recover as damages from the owner or operator of an uninsured highway vehicle because of bodily injury sustained by the insured, caused by accident and arising out of the ownership, maintenance or use of such uninsured highway vehicle; . . .

"Under the Uninsured Motorists Coverage, the following are insureds:

"(a) The named insured and any relative . . . ."

"Under definitions:

"`relative' means a person related to the named insured by blood, marriage or adoption who is a resident of the same household, provided neither such relative nor his spouse owns a private passenger automobile; . . . ."

The coverage question before the court was whether or not, the plaintiff's son, Dale G. Quick, who lived within the same household, was a "relative" within the meaning of the insurance policy. The question depends upon whether or not a certain car which Dale owned was a "private passenger automobile" within the terms of the policy. The trial court held that Dale was a "relative" within the meaning of the insurance policy and that the defendant was liable under the terms of the policy. The defendant has appealed to this court.

In June of 1966, Dale bought a 1955 Chevrolet automobile for approximately $200. Title to the car issued to Dale and license plates were purchased for it. The car was not in good condition, however, and was towed to his home where he worked on it until it was operable. From the record, it is difficult to determine this date, but it was sometime in the fall of 1966, and the car was operable for perhaps five weeks. It is clear, however, that it did not run at any time after Christmas of 1966.

Dale purchased 1967 license plates, but these were never put on the car. In mid-January, he obtained a new insurance policy covering the car, but this was cancelled on January 28, 1967, since Dale could not get the car to run. Also, he and his father had decided that under these circumstances it was not wise to pay for insurance.

Dale continued to do some work on the car during the winter of 1967. However, his interest or determination to make it operative apparently dwindled, and the car remained in the same inoperable condition for at least several weeks prior to March 9, 1967. On that date ...


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