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Maine.gov > PFR Home > Insurance Regulation >Administrative & Enforcement Actions > Cancellation Hearing Index > Cancellation / Nonrenewal : Docket No. INS-07-2121 Decision
Joyce Merrill v. MMG Insurance Company
The insured requested a hearing following receipt of a notice of automobile insurance cancellation alleging the driver’s license suspension of a household resident. The company submitted the relevant motor vehicle record into evidence and explained the discovery of the person’s presence in the insured’s household. The insured testified that the person at issue has never held a driver’s license.
Held: For the company. The Maine Automobile Cancellation Control Act, 24-A M.R.S.A. §§ 2911-2924, allows policy cancellation if “the named insured or any operator who either resides in the same household or customarily operates an automobile insured under the policy has a driver’s license suspended, other than a first or 2nd suspension under Title 29-A section 2471, subsection 2 or section 2472, subsection 2, or a suspension under Title 28-A section 2052, or revoked during the policy term or, if the policy is a renewal, during its term or the 180 days immediately preceding its effective date.” 24-A M.R.S.A. § 2914(4).
There is no question that the person at issue is a resident of the insured’s household. There is also no question that a suspension of the person’s ability to obtain a driver’s license occurred during the policy term. None of the exceptions in the statute apply in this case.
The conviction - for operating after suspension - that resulted in the current suspension establishes the person’s status as an operator under § 2914(4). Although “operator” is not defined in the Maine insurance statutes, it is defined in statutes pertaining to motor vehicles as “an individual who drives or is in control of a vehicle or who is exercising control over or steering a towed vehicle.” 29-A M.R.S.A. § 101(48). The person’s ability to obtain a driver’s license was originally suspended for the failure to pay child support, which does not involve the operation of a vehicle. Thus, the original suspension would not provide grounds for policy cancellation. The subsequent suspension, however, confirms that the person has been, on at least one occasion, an “operator” of a vehicle. The company also demonstrated compliance with the notice requirements of § 2915. This cancellation action is permitted.
Last Updated: January 16, 2014
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