Scott J. Pawlak
Scott’s practice focuses on first- and third-party automobile defense, premises liability actions and construction liability matters. Scott has handled cases at the State and Federal level. He has also served as a mediator in Wayne and Macomb Counties.
Member, Oakland County Bar Association
Member, Michigan Defense Trial Counsel (MDTC)
Committee Co-Chair, MDTC Social Media Committee
Chair, Social Committee, Student Bar Association (2013-2014)
Working on behalf of a no-fault insurer, obtained summary disposition of Plaintiff’s claims in Oakland County Circuit Court due to Plaintiff’s fraudulent representations in his claim for benefits. By obtaining testimony from Plaintiff and his services provider that “directly and specifically contradicted” the representations made in Plaintiff’s replacement service statements, Attorney Pawlak was able to persuade the Court that the Plaintiff had committed fraud under the policy, without having to rely on surveillance evidence. The Plaintiff’s and his provider’s claims were dismissed with prejudice. (February 2018)
Obtained summary disposition on behalf of a no-fault insurer in a subrogation claim for damage to a motorized wheelchair. In a question of first impression in Michigan, the Court agreed with the Defendant that the wheelchair was considered a “prosthetic device” under Michigan’s No-Fault Act, and was therefore compensable as a personal injury protection benefit. Plaintiff’s subrogation claim was dismissed with prejudice. (September 2017)
Successfully obtained summary disposition on behalf of a no-fault insurer for medical expenses arising out of a motor vehicle accident. Following the accident, Plaintiff’s health insurer (through an ERISA plan) reimbursed plaintiff’s healthcare providers at a reduced amount pursuant to their provider participation agreements, whereas plaintiff sought the remaining difference. The Court held that because the providers were not entitled to pursue the differential, Plaintiff had not “incurred” those amounts and was therefore not entitled to recover the differential. For more details, click here. (August 2017)
Won summary disposition in Wayne County Circuit Court for defendant insurer in first-party No Fault case. Successfully moved for dismissal of Plaintiff’s entire claim, pursuant to the fraud exclusion of the insurance contract, based on Plaintiff’s fraudulent representations regarding his wage loss claim. More than $650,000 in first-party benefits were extinguished as a result of the decision. (2017)
Won summary disposition in Wayne County Circuit Court for insurer in first-party No Fault case. The Court agreed with defendant insurer that a Plaintiff daughter’s claim under her mother’s automobile insurance policy that had been previously rescinded was barred by the collateral estoppel and collateral attack doctrines. The Court further found that there was no factual development that could result in PIP coverage under the policy, and Plaintiff’s claims were therefore dismissed with prejudice. (2017)
Won Summary Disposition in Wayne County Circuit Court, successfully obtaining rescission of a No-Fault automobile policy. The Court agreed with the defendant that the insured’s fraudulent representations in the application process were material, and the insurer was therefore entitled to rescind its policy. (2016)
Won summary disposition in Oakland County Circuit Court for defendants sued in automobile accident. Plaintiff alleged negligence against their clients, defendant driver and owner of the other vehicle involved in the accident, the Court granted summary disposition to defendants and found that as a matter of law, defendants could not be found negligent as alleged by the plaintiff in this case. The plaintiff had been a passenger in a vehicle driven by his wife. Despite plaintiff’s arguments to the contrary, the facts simply did not support any theory that Defendants were negligent in any way. As a result, the Court dismissed the case against them with prejudice. (2016)
Won summary disposition in Oakland County Circuit Court for national pet store chain sued in dog-bite case. The Court, agreeing with the defendant, found that Plaintiff’s claims failed because: 1) there was no precedent under either ordinary negligence or premises liability principles to impose a leash length requirement to protect customers from dogs owned by third parties, 2) there was no evidence that the pet store had prior knowledge of the dog’s vicious behavior, and 3) there was no evidence that the dog bite was created by the defendant’s active negligence. The Court also dismissed Plaintiff’s claims for negligent infliction of emotional distress and loss of consortium. (2015)
Scott has presented to claims adjustment groups on issues facing insurers in district courts, and the importance of maintaining communication between claims representatives and the attorney.