Motorist and insurer head to court over settlement funds

By Robert Hadley | Mar 28, 2016

PINEVILLE – A Wyoming County man is suing his insurance carrier in a dispute involving a settlement for a car accident.

Christopher Laney filed a lawsuit March 16 in Wyoming Circuit Court against Safeco Insurance Company of America, alleging that Safeco is wrongly trying to claim part of a settlement.

According to the complaint, Laney’s vehicle was struck by a Wyoming County sheriff’s squad car Feb. 12, 2012 as the sheriff pursued Tyler Mack Addair in an unrelated matter. The suit says Laney settled with the insurance companies of both the Wyoming Sheriff’s Department and Addair, but Safeco claims they are owed some of Laney’s settlement money for underinsured motorist coverage. However, Laney says he is owed all settlement amounts because they did not exhaust liability limits of his Safeco policy.

Laney seeks release of the funds Safeco is contesting, plus declaratory judgments denying Safeco’s subrogation rights. He is represented by attorney Stephen P. New and Amanda J. Taylor of Beckley.

Wyoming Circuit Court Case number 16-C-30

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