Auto Insurance Companies Deny Claims Statewide
updated 10:46 a.m. ET, Thurs., May. 8, 2008
CLEVELAND - If you think your full coverage auto insurance policy will protect you, think again. After tragic
accidents, families across our state are finding a gap in their coverage. The Calhoun family knows all too well
about that gap. In 2003, the happy family of five picked up their new car. However just days after the
purchase, that happiness was replaced with grief because of a horrific car accident that changed their lives
Full Coverage Doesn't Always Protect
Luke Calhoun was at the wheel when he turned into the path of an SUV.
"I didn't see anybody coming. I thought it was safe to go," Luke said.
Luke and Vicky Calhoun's three children took the worst of the impact. As Vicky painfully recalls, there was
nothing she could do.
Vicky said, "it was the worst day of my life."
Their daughter Olivia was hurt badly, but 2-year-old Isabelle bore the brunt of the accident.
"I had to hold Bella's neck up so she could breathe," Vicky said.
Sadly, Isabelle died shortly after the accident.
On top of the tragedy, the medical bills began piling up. The Calhouns had bought a full-coverage auto
insurance policy. It was the best type of coverage offered and they thought those medical bills would be paid
by their auto insurance company.
The bills were not fully covered. The Calhouns received a letter from their insurer stating they would get just
$5,000, the maximum medical coverage in the policy, but nothing more.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars that would have been once been paid under the "uninsured/underinsured"
section of their policy were denied.
"It's something that's hard to recover from," Luke said.
In the letter, the insurance company wrote: "we do not provide liability coverage...for bodily injury to you or
any family member." Furthermore, the car is not covered as an ?uninsured motor vehicle."
Across Ohio, our 5 On Your Side investigation uncovered insurance co