Zobrist v. Farmers Ins. Exchange

Decision Date31 March 1987
Docket NumberNo. 16931,16931
Citation734 P.2d 699,103 Nev. 104
PartiesRay V. ZOBRIST, Appellant, v. FARMERS INSURANCE EXCHANGE, Respondent.
CourtNevada Supreme Court

Leavitt & Leavitt, Las Vegas, for appellant.

Beckley, Singleton, DeLanoy, Jemison & List, and Daniel F. Polsenberg, Las Vegas, for respondent.



Farmers Insurance Exchange (Farmers) insured several cars owned by Zobrist under a single policy with an underinsured motorist limit of $500,000. The policy also included an uninsured motorist exclusion for owned but uninsured cars. Zobrist collided with another car while driving his dune buggy, which was not insured under the policy. He received $15,000, the policy limit, from the other driver. Farmers and Zobrist stipulated that the total amount of damages exceeded this amount by $35,000.

The parties dispute the amount of underinsured motorist coverage available to Zobrist under Farmers' policy. Zobrist claims that the applicable policy limits for underinsured motorist coverage is equal to or exceeds $35,000. Farmers, on the other hand, contends that the underinsured motorist coverage is limited to $15,000, the minimum required by statute. Accordingly, Farmers paid $20,000 ($5,000 for interest and costs). On these stipulated facts, the district court granted summary judgment in favor of Farmers and held that under the insurance policy and NRS 690B.020, Farmers had no further obligation to Zobrist.

Nevada statutes require every motor vehicle liability policy to also provide coverage for accidents with uninsured vehicles. NRS 690B.020. The amount of coverage to be provided cannot be less than the $15,000 per person or $30,000 per accident required for liability insurance, but may be equal to the limits of liability coverage purchased by the policy holder. NRS 690B.020(2). Uninsured motorist provisions must also allow an insured to recover up to the limits of his policy any amount which exceeds the policy limits of the other driver. NRS 687B.145(2) (underinsured motorist coverage).

Zobrist contends that these statutes require Farmers to provide coverage up to his $500,000 policy limit regardless of whether he was driving a vehicle which was specifically excluded in his policy. Farmers, on the other hand, contends that the statutes only require Farmers to pay $15,000, and that the coverage exclusion is valid beyond the statutory minimum.

A "person insured" within the meaning of the uninsured motorist statutes cannot be...

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11 cases
  • Ford Motor Co. v. Trejo
    • United States
    • Nevada Supreme Court
    • September 27, 2017
  • Howell v. Balboa Ins. Co.
    • United States
    • Louisiana Supreme Court
    • June 29, 1990
    ...v. Horizon Assurance Co., 553 A.2d 1199 (Del.1989) (construing Del.Code Ann. tit. 18 Sec. 3902 (1974)); Zobrist v. Farmers Insurance Exchange, 103 Nev. 104, 734 P.2d 699 (1987) (construing Nev.Rev.Stat.Ann. Sec. 647B.145 (1978)); Welch v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co., 122 Wis.2d 17......
  • Wagner v. Farmers Ins. Exchange, 890316-CA
    • United States
    • Utah Court of Appeals
    • January 9, 1990
    ...See Allstate Ins. Co. v. United States Fidelity & Guar. Co., 619 P.2d 329, 333 (Utah 1980); see also Zobrist v. Farmers Ins. Exch., 103 Nev. 104, 734 P.2d 699, 700 (1987) (per curiam). There are circumstances when the reasonable expections of the insured may counteract a clear exclusion in ......
  • Collins v. Farmers Ins. Exchange
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Nevada
    • March 26, 1999
    ...exclusion. The court agrees with Farmers that the exclusion at issue is not contrary to Nevada public policy. In Zobrist v. Farmers Ins. Exch., 103 Nev. 104, 734 P.2d 699 (1987), and Nelson v. California State Auto. Ass'n Inter-Insurance Bureau, 114 Nev. 345, 956 P.2d 803 (1998), the Nevada......
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