Submitted: September 20, 2016
from United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Missouri - Cape Girardeau
LOKEN, BEAM, and BENTON, Circuit Judges.
Walker died in a motorcycle accident. His wife, Ronda Walker,
brought a wrongful death action against the driver of the
other vehicle, which the parties settled for the driver's
liability policy limit of $25, 000. Ronda then sued the
Walkers' insurer, Progressive Direct Insurance Company,
to recover underinsured motorist insurance ("UIM")
under two Progressive Auto Policies insuring their six other
cars. After Progressive removed the action to federal court,
the district court granted Progressive's motion for
summary judgment, concluding that the policies'
"owned vehicle" exclusion barred UIM coverage
because Steve did not purchase UIM coverage under a separate
policy insuring his motorcycle. Ronda appeals. Reviewing
de novo the district court's interpretation of
the insurance policies and their ambiguity, as Missouri law
requires, we affirm. Floyd-Tunnell v. Shelter Mut. Ins.
Co., 439 S.W.3d 215, 217 (Mo. banc 2014).
Progressive policies provided UIM coverage for each of the
six named vehicles. The policies' "owned
vehicle" exclusion ("OVE") is common in auto
liability policies. The Supreme Court of Missouri has noted
the exclusion's purpose: "one cannot simply buy a
policy of insurance on one vehicle and then argue that the
policy covers other vehicles that the insured also owns but
chose not to insure." Dutton v. American Family Mut.
Ins. Co., 454 S.W.3d 319, 323 (Mo. banc 2015). Here,
Steve Walker separately insured his motorcycle without UIM
coverage is not required by statute in Missouri, so
Ronda's coverage claim turns on the UIM provisions in
Progressive's policies, construed in accordance with
Missouri law. Progressive provided UIM coverage in Part III
(B) of its Auto Policy. The "Insuring Agreement" in
Part III (B) provided:
If you pay the premium for this coverage, we will pay for
damages that an insured person is legally entitled to recover
from the owner or operator of an underinsured motor vehicle
because of bodily injury:
1. sustained by that insured person;
2. caused by an accident; and
3. arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of an
underinsured motor vehicle.
policies' general definitions defined "Bodily
injury" to mean "bodily harm . . . including death
that results from bodily harm, " and defined
"You" to mean "a person shown as a named
insured on the declarations page."
exclusion in Part III (B) provided that UIM ...