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John Moreno v. Nationwide Insurance Company

Case Conclusion Date: 05.23.1997

Practice Area: Car Accidents

Outcome: affirmed on appeal

Description: 114 F.3d 168: John Moreno, Plaintiff-appellant, v. Nationwide Insurance Company, United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit. - 114 F.3d 168. This appeal presents a single issue for our consideration: whether a provision in an automobile insurance policy requiring proof of a hit-and-run accident from competent evidence other than the testimony of any insured is in derogation of Alabama's Uninsured Motorist Statute, Ala.Code § 32-7-23 (1975). To anyone familiar with the concept of federalism, this may appear to be an unusual issue for our court. We originally certified this question to the Alabama Supreme Court for its pronouncement on what is clearly a question of substantive state law; however, the court declined our invitation. Moreno v. Nationwide Insurance Company, 105 F.3d 1358 (11th Cir.1997). Therefore, we are placed in the unusual position of having to decide a first impression question of Alabama state law. We hold that a corroboration requirement in phantom driver cases is not contrary to public policy. Accordingly, we affirm the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of appellee/defendant Nationwide Insurance Company ("Nationwide").

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