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Dodge v. Sherman

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Third Circuit

June 7, 2017

JUSTIN DODGE
v.
TRACY B. SHERMAN, ET AL.

         APPLICATION FOR SUPERVISORY WRITS FROM THE TWELFTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF AVOYELLES, NO. 2009-3799 HONORABLE KERRY L. SPRUILL, DISTRICT JUDGE

          Sidney W. Degan, III Travis L. Bourgeois Catherine N. Thigpen Degan, Blanchard & Nash COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPLICANT: Gemini Insurance Company.

          Michael Joey Bernard Burglass & Tankersley, LLC COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANTS/RESPONDENTS: Moncla Auto Sales, LLC Glen Ducote.

          William Compton Helm Kinchen, Walker, Bienvenu COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/RESPONDENT: Tracy B. Sherman.

          Cory P. Roy Brandon J. Scott Benjamin D. James Roy & Scott COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/RESPONDENT: Justin Dodge.

          Blake E. Ryland Law Office of Darrel D. Ryland, APLC COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANTS/RESPONDENTS: Moncla Auto Sales, LLC Glen Ducote.

          Court composed of John D. Saunders, Elizabeth A. Pickett, and Shannon J. Gremillion, Judges.

          SHANNON J. GREMILLION JUDGE.

         We granted supervisory writs in this matter to review the trial court's denial of a motion for summary judgment filed by Relator, Gemini Insurance Company, in a suit by Mr. Dodge against Ms. Tracey Sherman and her employer, Moncla Auto Sales, LLC (Moncla), following a motor vehicle accident that occurred on March 29, 2009, in Avoyelles Parish. Ms. Sherman was operating a motor vehicle owned by Moncla and insured by Gemini. She was, also allegedly, intoxicated at the time of the collision.

         During the course of this litigation, Mr. Dodge amended his petition to assert his entitlement to damages for Gemini's bad faith:

Plaintiff desires to further amend and supplement the original petition by inserting the following Paragraphs after Paragraph IX of the original petition, said paragraphs to read as follows:
"Additionally, a Uniform Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Report was issued on the March 29, 2009-the date of the accident- indicating that Justin Dodge was a passenger in the vehicle operated by Tracy Sherman and that Justin Dodge was transported to Avoyelles
Hospital subsequent to the collision.
Thereafter, on June 2, 2009, a certified letter was forwarded to Gemini Insurance Company's insured by Justin Dodge's counsel notifying the Insured of Justin Dodge's injuries. Justin Dodge filed suit against Gemini Insurance Company's insured driver on July 8, 2009 and amended his petition on August 31, 2009 naming Gemini Insurance Company as defendant.
Nevertheless, Gemini Insurance Company disbursed its policy limits to additional claimants despite clear notice to it and its insured that Justin Dodge possessed a claim for injuries under the Gemini Insurance Company policy and ...

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