Std. of Review: Interpretation of insurance policy on appeal is question of law reviewed de novo

Interpretation of an insurance policy is a question of law which we review de novo. Cinelli v. Ward, 997 S.W.2d 474 (Ky. App. 1998). The applicable rules of construction were summarized in Goodman v. Horace Mann Ins. Co., 100 S.W.3d 769, 772 (Ky. App. 2003):

[I]n this state doubts concerning the meaning of contracts of insurance are resolved in favor of the insured. State Auto. Mutual Ins. Co. v. Ellis, Ky.App.,700 S.W.2d 801, 803 (1985). But, in the absence of ambiguities or of a statute to the contrary, the terms of an insurance policy will be enforced as drawn. Osborne v. Unigard Indemnity Co., Ky.App., 719 S.W.2d 737, 740 (1986); Woodard v. Calvert Fire Ins. Co., Ky., 239 S.W.2d 267, 269 (1951). Unless the terms contained in an insurance policy have acquired a technical meaning in law, they “must be interpreted according to the usage of the average man and as they would be read and understood by him in the light of the prevailing rule that uncertainties and ambiguities must be resolved in favor of the insured.” Fryman v. Pilot Life Ins. Co., Ky., 704 S.W.2d 205, 206 (1986).

Because we conclude that the terms of the KEMI policy are unambiguous, we must enforce the policy as written without application of alternative rules of construction. Edwards v. Carlisle, 179 S.W.3d 257, 261 (Ky. App. 2004).

 

 

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