In a precedential decision issued on January 31, 2022, the Minnesota Court of Appeals held that a pickup truck is not a “commercial vehicle” subject to No-Fault indemnity claims under Minn. Stat. § 65B.53, subd. 1 even if its curb weight exceeds 5,500 pounds, unless it was being used in a commercial capacity when the accident causing injury occurred.
The Court reasoned that pickup trucks fall within the definition of “passenger automobile” in Minn. Stat. § 168.002, subd. 24 and therefore cannot be “commercial vehicles” as that term is defined in Minn. Stat. § 65B.43, subd. 12(b). Consequently, a pickup truck whose curb weight exceeds 5,500 pounds will only be a “commercial vehicle” subject to No-Fault indemnity claims when it is being used as a common carrier or in the for-hire transport of property.
While precedential for now, the Court of Appeals’ decision may be subject to a petition for discretionary review to the Minnesota Supreme Court.
As always please feel free to reach out to any of the firm’s Automobile attorneys for further questions.