Geico ordered to pay $5.2M to woman who got HPV in a car
We’re barely more than a week into June and it’s already a banner month for weird car sex stories. This week’s comes way out of left field (which is somewhere near Kansas City, apparently) thanks to a ruling by the Missouri Court of Appeals ordering insurance juggernaut Geico to pay a woman $5.2 million in damages after being infected with HPV during intimate activities that took place in an insured personal vehicle. Look, we warned you.
Per The Kansas City Star, the woman initiated a claim with Geico in February 2021 after learning that she’d contracted the sexually transmitted infection from a partner who knew but did not disclose his status. Since the incident in question happened in her partner’s car, she argued that his liability insurance was responsible for damages. A settlement was reportedly offered to Geico, whose lawyers declined. As anybody who’s had legal entanglements with an insurance company can probably guess, the case went to arbitration.
In what we’re certain was a surprise to Geico’s legal team, arbitration did not go their way. The woman’s partner was found liable and the arbitrator approved an award of $5.2 million in damages to be paid out by the insurer despite requests by Geico for a new hearing. The insurance company appealed to the courts on several grounds, claiming that the process denied it the ability to have its day in court. The company’s appeal was denied on all points. For anyone who’s ever emerged from arbitration feeling that the process leaves something to be desired, this time it’s an insurance company who feels that way.