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CPAN Issues Statement on Tuesday's Oral Arguments in the Pending Case of Andary et al v USAA Casualty Insurance Company et al

CPAN Issues Statement on Tuesday's Oral Arguments in the Pending Case of Andary et al v USAA Casualty Insurance Company et al

CPAN Issues Statement on Today’s Oral Arguments in the Pending Case of Andary et al v USAA Casualty Insurance Company et al

Thursday, June 9, 2022

The Coalition Protecting Auto No-Fault (CPAN), who was granted amicus curiae status by the Michigan Court of Appeals in the pending case of Andary et al v USAA Casualty Insurance Company et al, remotely attended the oral argument hearing held in that case today and noted afterwards that the three judge appellate panel was keenly aware of the great importance of the Andary litigation and paid close attention to the legal arguments of counsel.

In the Andary litigation, the Plaintiffs, supported by CPAN, strongly urged that it would be fundamentally illegal to enforce the medical benefit cuts recently enacted by the new no-fault legislation against catastrophically injured auto accident victims who purchased auto no-fault insurance policies and sustained their injury many years before the recent legislation was passed. The legal team representing Ms. Andary (George Sinas and Mark Granzotto) argued that the no-fault insurance policies purchased by the Plaintiffs in this litigation specifically required the payment of “all reasonable charges” for reasonably necessary medical care and, given that contractual right, insurers had the duty to pay those benefits to the Plaintiffs without regard to the recently adopted “government fee schedules” and the limitations on reimbursable family provided attendant care. The Plaintiffs urged the Court of Appeals to find that any such effort to apply these new benefit cuts to Plaintiffs injured prior to the effective date of the new law would constitute an illegal deprivation of the legally vested contractual rights of these Plaintiffs.

In that regard, George Sinas, lead counsel for the Plaintiffs, stated, “The central point in this entire litigation is the fact that long ago, the Plaintiffs in this case purchased auto no-fault insurance policies that would not permit the enforcement of the benefit cuts contained in this new legislation. In other words, these Plaintiffs purchased the contractual right to the payment of benefits without regard to these limitations and the insurance companies involved charged these Plaintiffs a premium to provide those benefits. Now the insurers contend they can deny payment of the benefits that they sold to these patients, while retaining the premiums they collected to pay them. That would be a classic example of governmental interference with private contract rights as well as a governmentally sanctioned windfall for auto insurers who would no longer have to pay benefits that they collected money to provide.”

The Court’s decision in this case will affect thousands and thousands of Michigan citizens who purchased no-fault insurance policies and were injured many years before these new laws were passed. There are approximately 18,000 of these patients who were catastrophically injured and whose medical expenses are now being reimbursed by the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA).

“So, we’re not dealing with litigation that is only going to affect a few people. On the contrary, the number of victims who will be severely harmed if such benefit cuts are allowed by the Court of Appeals, boggles the mind,” said Sinas. “Recently we’ve seen media stories about the famous Detroit Red Wing hockey play, Vladimir Konstantinov, who was catastrophically brain injured many years ago in a motor vehicle accident and will now lose essential in-home attendant care and thus may be forced to live in an institution. The sad thing is there are thousands of Vladi Konstantinovs whose tragic stories have not been publicized, but who are similarly experiencing the prospect of such frightening outcomes,” said Sinas.

CPAN President, Devin Hutchings, added further perspective to the importance of the Andary litigation when he said, “The issue of whether the benefit limitations enacted by this new law are good or bad, is not the issue in the Andary litigation. Whether those limitations will continue to be applied to accident victims injured in the future is a matter for the legislature. The issue in the Andary case is whether the medical benefits previously purchased by auto no-fault victims under policies issued many years ago can be snatched away from them in what would be an outrageous theft.”

It is not clear when the Court of Appeals will issue its decision. It could be weeks or months, predicted court observers. Regardless of the decision of the Court of Appeals in Andary, it is highly likely that the case will be appealed to the Michigan Supreme Court for a final determination.

CPAN is a broad bi-partisan, Michigan based coalition, whose mission is to be the consumer advocate for auto insurance policyholders, those who have been injured in a motor vehicle crash and the medical providers caring for them, representing them at the Capitol, in the courts, and in the public forum. For more information, please visit