A woman got an STI in a car. Now Geico may have to pay her $5.2 million.

Geico may be on the line for a $5.2 million legal settlement after a woman claimed she contracted a sexually transmitted disease in a company-insured car.

A Missouri court on Tuesday upheld a verdict awarding the money to the woman, who is referred to as “MO” in court documents. MO claimed she contracted human papillomavirus (HPV) by having sex with a male partner in his 2014 Hyundai Genesis, which was covered by Geico, according to a 2021 complaint.

The woman, who learned she was infected with HPV in 2018, claimed that the man knew he had HPV but failed to inform her, causing them “past and future medical costs” and “mental and medical expenses.” physical pain and suffering”.

The woman warned Geico that she was taking legal action against the man, alleging that she had been negligently contaminated in the vehicle and that car insurance should cover her injuries and losses. According to the complaint, MO asked Geico $1 million. “Let me know,” she wrote.

Geico denied the cover and dismissed her claim. After that, MO and the man went to arbitration, and the arbitrator found that the man had negligently infected her and awarded MO $5.2 million in damages, to be paid by Geico.

Geico appealed the verdict, but Tuesday’s Missouri ruling found that the insurer had no legal grounds to appeal on several counts, including that it “had no right to re-litigate” after liability and damages had been established by an arbitrator and confirmed by trial court.

In a statement to CBS MoneyWatch, Geico said, “Whether there is coverage for this case will be determined” by a federal lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri.

Geico challenges case in federal court

Geico had also claimed that it was “denied the right to litigate its interests before the verdict was handed down against its insured”. But the ruling revealed that the company had an opportunity to participate and defend its interests when MO contacted Geico to claim that the insurance policy would cover her injuries and losses.

“Geico did not take advantage of this opportunity and instead denied coverage and refused to defend Insured,” the court noted.

However, Geico may not have to pay the $5.2 million verdict, given the related federal lawsuit filed by the insurer, which disputes the claim is covered by its auto policy, according to the Kansas City Star, which previously reported on the Missouri ruling.

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