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Spore v. GEICO Indemnity Co.

Court of Appeals of Arkansas, Division IV

June 8, 2016

JOSHUA M. SPORE APPELLANT
v.
GEICO INDEMNITY COMPANY APPELLEE

         APPEAL FROM THE PULASKI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, SECOND DIVISION [NO. CV-14-2226] HONORABLE CHRISTOPHER CHARLES PIAZZA, JUDGE

          Ethredge & Copeland, P.A., by: David L. Ethredge and Johnnie A. Copeland, for appellant.

          Wright, Lindsey & Jennings LLP, by: Michael A. Thompson and Baxter D. Drennon, for appellee.

          ROBERT J. GLADWIN, Chief Judge

         Appellant Joshua M. Spore appeals the September 8, 2015 order of the Pulaski County Circuit Court that, in part, granted appellee GEICO Indemnity Company's motion for summary judgment. Appellant argues that (1) the facts presented to the trial court do not support the breach of the cooperation clause in Lolita Ford's agreement with appellee; (2) the answer to the question "Who is Laura Mott?" is a material fact at issue in this matter; (3) the facts as presented do not give rise to a duty to cooperate on the part of Adrian Ford[1], under the policy issued to Lolita, and thus, appellee's contact with Adrian does not satisfy its burden of proof; (4) the contacts made by appellee do not give rise to the satisfaction of the due-diligence standard; and (5) appellee did not establish that it was prejudiced by the alleged lack of cooperation by the Fords. We affirm.

         I. Facts

         On March 6, 2011, appellee issued an automobile liability insurance policy to Lolita-the policy's only named insured-for the period from April 9, 2011, to October 9, 2011, providing liability insurance to Lolita for a 2005 Pontiac Grand Prix. The policy contains the following cooperation clause as a condition to liability coverage:

3. ASSISTANCE AND COOPERATION OF THE INSURED. The insured will cooperate and assist us, if required:
(a) In the investigation of the occurrence;
(b) In making settlements;
(c) In the conduct of suits;
(d) In enforcing any right of contribution or indemnity against any legally responsible person or organization because of bodily injury or property damage;
(e) At hearings and trials;
(f) In securing and giving evidence; and
(g) By obtaining the attendance of ...

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