Susan E. Abbott, Plaintiff, v. Ohio University, Defendant.

No. 2010-11579-AD.Court of Claims of Ohio.
Filed February 16, 2011.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This case is unpublished as indicated by the issuing court.]

MEMORANDUM DECISION FINDINGS OF FACT {¶ 1} 1) Plaintiff, Susan E. Abbott, filed this action against defendant, Ohio University (OU), contending her 2006 GMC Envoy was damaged on October 13, 2010 as a proximate cause of negligence on the part of OU personnel in conducting lawn maintenance activity on university grounds.

{¶ 2} 2) In her complaint, plaintiff requested damage recovery in the amount of $538.20, the total cost of automotive repair for her vehicle. Plaintiff acknowledged that she maintains insurance coverage for automotive damage with a $250.00 deductible provision. The $25.00 filing fee was paid and plaintiff requested reimbursement of that cost along with her damage claim.

{¶ 3} 3) Defendant filed an investigation report neither admitting nor denying liability in this matter. Defendant did dispute plaintiffs claim pointing out she carries insurance coverage with a $250.00 deductible provision. Defendant stated, “[t]he University, however, is agreeable to a decision in the amount of $275 which would include (plaintiffs) out-of-pocket expenses, her collision deductible of $250 and the filing

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{¶ 4} 4) Plaintiff filed a response requesting judgment in her favor for the full amount of damages claimed, $538.20.

CONCLUSIONS OF LAW {¶ 5} 1) Defendant was charged with a duty to exercise reasonable care for the protection of plaintiffs property while performing any maintenance work. Hoelle v. Miami Univ., Ct. of Cl. No. 2005-06970-AD, 2005-Ohio-4643. In regards to the facts of this claim, negligence on the part of defendant has been shown Rust v. Miami Univ., Ct. of Cl. No. 2005-01226-AD, 2005-Ohio-1248; Laux v. Cleveland State Univ., Ct. of Cl. No. 2007-01410-AD, 2007-Ohio-2409 Dunlap v. Ohio University, Ct. of Cl. No. 2009-06010-AD, 2009-Ohio-7081.

{¶ 6} 2) R.C. 2743.02(D) provides:

“(D) Recoveries against the state shall be reduced by the aggregate of insurance proceeds, disability award, or other collateral recovery received by the claimant. This division does not apply to civil actions in the court of claims against a state university or college under the circumstances described in section 3345.40 of the Revised Code. The collateral benefits provisions of division (B)(2) of that section apply under those circumstances.”

Also, R.C. 3345.02(B)(2) states in pertinent part:

“If a plaintiff receives or is entitled to receive benefits for injuries or loss allegedly incurred from a policy or policies of insurance or any other source, the benefits shall be disclosed to the court, and the amount of the benefits shall be deducted from any award against the state university or college recovered by plaintiff.”

{¶ 7} 3) Defendant is liable to plaintiff for her insurance coverage deductible, $250.00, plus the $25.00 filing fee which may be reimbursed as compensable costs pursuant to R.C. 2335.19. Se Bailey v. Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (1990), 62 Ohio Misc. 2d 19, 587 N.E. 2d 990.

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Having considered all the evidence in the claim file and, for the reasons set forth in the memorandum decision filed concurrently herewith, judgment is rendered in favor of plaintiff in the amount of $275.00, which includes the filing fee. Court costs are assessed against defendant.

Entry cc:

Susan E. Abbott 37019 Rocksprings Road Pomeroy, Ohio 45769

George T. Wendt, Risk Manager Ohio University 160 Union Street HDL Center 166H Athens, Ohio 45701

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