Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Ex parte Alfa Mutual Insurance Co.

Supreme Court of Alabama

September 1, 2017

Ex parte Alfa Mutual Insurance Company
v.
Alfa Mutual Insurance Company In re: Richard Holley

         Pickens Circuit Court, CV-16-900057

          PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS

          WISE, JUSTICE.

         Alfa Mutual Insurance Company, the defendant below, filed a petition for a writ of mandamus requesting that this Court direct the Pickens Circuit Court to vacate its order denying a motion to transfer the underlying action to the Tuscaloosa Circuit Court and to enter an order granting the motion. We grant the petition and issue the writ.

         Facts and Procedural History

         On February 20, 2016, Richard Holley, who resided in Pickens County, was involved in a motor-vehicle accident in Tuscaloosa County. The other vehicle was driven by David Craig Evans, who was uninsured. Emergency-medical-services personnel from NorthStar EMS in Tuscaloosa treated Holley at the scene and then transported him to DCH Regional Medical Center in Tuscaloosa. Law-enforcement personnel who were based in Tuscaloosa County also responded to the accident. After the accident, Holley received follow-up treatment from three medical providers in Tuscaloosa and one medical provider in Mississippi.

         Chris Evans, an agent for Alfa who had an office in Pickens County, had issued a personal automobile-insurance policy to Harry Michael Tilley, a resident of Pickens County. Shortly before the accident, Holley was added as an insured on Tilley's policy. The policy included uninsured-motorist coverage for Holley.

         On July 18, 2016, Holley's attorney wrote Alfa a letter requesting $75, 000 in uninsured-motorist benefits as compensation for injuries Holley suffered as a result of the accident. On August 2, 2016, Alfa sent a letter to Holley's attorney, refusing to pay the requested uninsured-motorist benefits and offering to settle Holley's claim for $10, 000. Shortly thereafter, on August 11, 2016, Holley filed a complaint in the Pickens Circuit Court against Alfa, stating uninsured-motorist, breach-of-contract, and bad-faith claims based on Alfa's refusal to pay the requested uninsured-motorist benefits.

         On December 28, 2016, Alfa filed a motion to transfer the action to Tuscaloosa County based on the doctrine of forum non conveniens, as codified in § 6-3-21.1, Ala. Code 1975. On February 15, 2017, Holley filed a response opposing the motion to transfer. On February 16, 2017, the trial court denied the motion to transfer. This petition followed.

         Standard of Review

"A petition for a writ of mandamus is the appropriate 'method for obtaining review of a denial of a motion for a change of venue' pursuant to § 6-3-21.1. Ex parte National Sec. Ins. Co., 727 So.2d 788');">727 So.2d 788, 789 (Ala. 1998). ...
"'....'
"'A party moving for a transfer under § 6-3-21.1 has the initial burden of showing, among other things, one of two factors: (1) that the transfer is justified based on the convenience of either the parties or the witnesses, or (2) that the transfer is justified "in the interest of justice."' Ex parte Indiana Mills & Mfg., Inc., 10 So.3d 536, 539 (Ala. 2008). Although we review a ruling on a motion to transfer to determine whether the trial court exceeded its discretion in granting or denying the motion, id., where 'the convenience of the parties and witnesses or the interest of justice would be best served by a transfer, § 6-3-21.1, Ala. Code 1975, compels the trial court to transfer the action to the alternative forum.' Ex parte First Tennessee Bank Nat'l Ass'n, 994 So.2d 906, 912 (Ala. 2008) (emphasis added)."

Ex parte Wachovia Bank, N.A., 77 So.3d 570, 573 (Ala. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.