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Ferguson v. Mississippi Farm Bureau Cas. Ins. Co.

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

September 9, 2014

NORMAN FERGUSON, APPELLANT
v.
MISSISSIPPI FARM BUREAU CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY, APPELLEE

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HANCOCK COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 04/04/2013. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. LAWRENCE PAUL BOURGEOIS JR. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: SUMMARY JUDGMENT GRANTED IN FAVOR OF APPELLEE.

FOR APPELLANT: MARY SCHILLESCI MCPHERSON.

FOR APPELLEE: PATRICK H. ZACHARY, MATTHEW D. SHOEMAKER.

BEFORE LEE, C.J., BARNES AND FAIR, JJ. LEE, C.J., IRVING AND GRIFFIS, P.JJ., ISHEE, ROBERTS, CARLTON, MAXWELL, FAIR AND JAMES, JJ., CONCUR.

OPINION

Page 375

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - INSURANCE

BARNES, J.

¶1. Norman Ferguson sued Mississippi Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company (Farm Bureau) for breach of contract and bad-faith refusal to pay his claim. The suit stemmed from an accident where Ferguson received a serious spinal injury while working on a farm owned by Robert Wilson in Hancock County, Mississippi. Wilson was insured by Farm Bureau under a general liability policy with a limit of $50,000 for an employer's liability.

¶2. The Circuit Court of Hancock County granted Farm Bureau's motion for summary judgment because there was no genuine issue of material fact about Ferguson's complaint being time-barred; the court found the three-year statute of limitations commenced on the date of the injury and had expired. Finding no error, we affirm.

STATEMENT OF FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

¶3. On January 21, 2008, Ferguson was working on Wilson's farm, roping calves

Page 376

from a four-wheeler in order to tag them, when the four-wheeler tipped over. As a result, Ferguson suffered a severe spinal-cord injury and was initially paralyzed from the neck down. He was in a wheelchair for approximately fifteen months after the accident, leaving him permanently disabled and unable to work.

¶4. Wilson was insured by Farm Bureau under a general liability policy with limits of $10,000 for farm employees' medical payments and $50,000 for farm employer's liability. It is undisputed the policy was in effect at the time of the accident. Ferguson made a claim on the insurance policy based on his injuries. Farm Bureau paid $10,000 for Ferguson's medical bills, and offered to pay Ferguson the $50,000 limit of liability. Ferguson claims he accepted ...


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