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Parties settle case, avoid Supreme Court ruling

The Supreme Court of Virginia will not decide the validity of an “illegal act” exclusion in a medical insurance policy.

The case of Bailey v. Anthem Health Plans of Virginia Inc., Record No. 082014, had been scheduled for argument before the court on Monday, but the parties settled.

“It was resolved to both parties’ satisfaction,” said Daniel R. Bieger, the Abingdon attorney who represented the insured, Roderick Bailey. A confidentiality agreement prevented him from saying more, Bieger said.

Bailey incurred more than $100,000 in medical bills from injuries he suffered when he lost control of his motorcycle in Buchanan
County in July 2005. He was charged originally with drunken driving and pleaded guilty to reckless driving.
A provision in his individual coverage policy with Anthem said it “does not cover any loss that results from the covered person committing or attempting to commit an illegal act.”

After Circuit Judge Henry A. Hanover ruled that the provision freed Anthem from liability, Bieger appealed to the Supreme Court. An article in the March 23 edition of Virginia Lawyers Weekly has details about the legal arguments.

By Alan Cooper

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