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Locke v. Estate of Davis

Locke v. Estate of Davis, 2015 MT 141 (May 26, 2015) (Cotter, J.) (5-0, aff’d & rev’d)

Issue: (1) Whether the district court properly denied the estate’s motion to alter or amend the judgment; (2) whether the district court abused its discretion by making findings and conclusions that effectively bind Safeco to a judgment when Safeco was not a named party and did not appear.

Short Answer: (1) No; and (2) yes.

Affirmed in part, vacated and remanded

Facts: In May 2011, Marian Davis lost control of her car and struck Amy Locke’s car. Davis died several hours later. Locke suffered multiple physical and emotional injuries.

Davis was insured by Safeco under a policy with $100,000 per person coverage. In August 2012, Locke filed a claim for damages against Davis’s estate.…