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JOHANNA KOMADA v. MICHAEL L. BROWNE (05/05/86)

decided: May 5, 1986.

JOHANNA KOMADA, PETITIONER
v.
MICHAEL L. BROWNE, INSURANCE COMMISSIONER OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, INSURANCE DEPARTMENT, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner in the case of In Re: Appeal of Johanna Komada, Keystone Insurance Company Policy No. 12001327, Docket No. PH83-3-4.

COUNSEL

Ronald Segal, for petitioner.

Samuel R. Marshall, Assistant Counsel, with him, Hannah Leavitt, Assistant Counsel, Chief of Litigation, for respondent.

Judges Craig, Doyle and Colins, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Colins.

Author: Colins

[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 20]

Johanna Komada (petitioner) appeals from an order of the Insurance Commissioner, dated July 15, 1983, holding that Keystone Insurance Company (intervenor) was not in violation of Section 3(b) of the Act of June 5,

[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 211968]

(Act), P.L. 140, as amended, 40 P.S. ยง 1008.3(b). We affirm.

Our scope of review of an order by the Insurance Commissioner is limited to a determination of whether constitutional rights have been violated, an error of law was committed, or the findings of fact were not supported by substantial evidence. Travelers Indemnity Co. of America v. Insurance Department, 63 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 542, 440 A.2d 645 (1981) (citing Crown Life Insurance Co. v. Department of Insurance, 39 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 94, 394 A.2d 1305 (1978)).

The basis for Keystone's non-renewal of petitioner's insurance policy was petitioner's involvement, as driver, in two "at fault" accidents within a three-year period. Respondent argues that this gave intervenor, Keystone, the right not to renew coverage under Section 3(b) of the Act. This section states that no insurer shall cancel or refuse to renew a policy of automobile insurance on the basis of one accident within the 36-month period prior to the upcoming anniversary date of the policy. Section 3(a)(13) of the Act,*fn1 however, sets forth a list of nine circumstances in which an accident might occur and, nonetheless, not be used as a basis of non-renewal under Section 3(b).*fn2

[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 22]

Petitioner argues that she should fall within Section 3(a)(13) because the accidents were not her "fault," a term for which there is no definition in the Act. This argument misconstrues Section 3(a)(13) of the Act. Section 3(a)(13) sets forth a detailed list of specific types of accidents which cannot be used by an insurer to justify an automobile policy termination. While each of those accidents deals with a circumstance in which blame could not reasonably be placed upon an insured, this list ...


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