Gendreau v. State Farm Fire Ins. Co.

Decision Date10 November 1939
Docket NumberNo. 32110.,32110.
Citation288 N.W. 225,206 Minn. 237
CourtMinnesota Supreme Court

Appeal from District Court, Morrison County; J. B. Himsl, Judge.

Action by A. Gendreau against the State Farm Fire Insurance Company of Bloomington, Illinois, on a policy to recover for the loss by fire of an automobile trailer. From an order denying plaintiff's motion for a new trial, the plaintiff appeals.

Order affirmed.

Charles A. Fortier, of Little Falls, for appellant.

Frederick J. Miller, of Little Falls, for respondent.

STONE, Justice.

Suing his insurer to recover for the loss by fire of an automobile trailer, plaintiff was defeated below through the medium of a verdict directed for defendant. The appeal is from the denial of plaintiff's motion for a new trial.

After the policy was issued plaintiff sold his "Palace Travel Auto Home" (trade-name for the insured trailer) to another. To that change of ownership he did not procure the consent of defendant. Thereby the policy automatically lapsed. Plaintiff claims a waiver with the effect of continuing the policy in force. Assuming without deciding that so far plaintiff's case is sound, both in fact and law, there is yet another obstacle to recovery.

The policy provided that no action to recover loss thereunder "shall be sustainable * * * unless commenced within twelve (12) months next after the happening of the loss." Here the loss occurred October 17, 1937, and the action was not commenced until some weeks more than a year thereafter.

For plaintiff the argument is that inasmuch as the policy was one of fire insurance, although it covered other risks of transportation as well, its attempt to fix a one year limitation for actions thereon was void because of a violation of 1 Mason's Minn.St.1927, § 3512. That section is the one prescribing a standard form for fire insurance policies and a two-year limitation for actions thereon.

By section § 3513 (L.1921, c. 342), it is declared that insurance on automobiles, including loss or damage by fire when combined in one policy with insurance against one or more of the other hazards mentioned in section 3315 (L.1915, c. 138), is excepted from the requirement of the standard fire policy law.

1. That exception plaintiff argues does not include an automobile trailer. Therein we cannot agree. The language is "insurance on automobiles, motorcycles and other motor vehicles."

The ubiquitous trailers are so...

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