Tracy joined the firm in 2008 as an associate and was elected a partner in 2015. Before joining the firm, Tracy served as a law clerk for the Honorable Victor C. Howard at the Missouri Western District Court of Appeals. She is licensed to practice in Missouri and Kansas, and is also admitted to the United States District Court of the District of Kansas, the United States District Court of the Western District of Missouri, the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Kansas, and the 10th Circuit United States Court of Appeals. Tracy’s practice concentrates on insurance coverage opinions and litigation, bodily injury defense, defense of professional liability claims, medical malpractice, government liability defense, commercial litigation, and civil rights defense.
J.D., University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law, 2006
State Legislative Update (Co-author), 2005 Journal of Dispute Resolution 419
Medicare Reporting, Set-Asides and Liens, NBI CLE, 2013, 2014
Insurance Case Law Update, NBI CLE, 2013, 2014
New Ethical Pitfalls You Need to be Aware of Regarding Social Media, NBI CLE, 2016
U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri, 2006
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, 2017
U.S. District Court, District of Kansas, 2007
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit, 2013
U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Kansas, 2015
Kansas Bar Association
The Missouri Bar
Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association
Association for Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City
Johnson County Bar Association
Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers
DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar
Kansas Association of Defense Counsel
Venue: Missouri Court of Appeals (Western District); Supreme Court of Missouri
Tracy Hayes defended this matter which involved the issue of whether liability policies stack. The issue was appealed to the Missouri Supreme Court and it held that under the Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law (MVFRL), separate owner’s policy of automobile insurance which do not insure the accident vehicle do not have to provide coverage for an accident involving an owned auto that is covered by a separate policy. The Supreme Court held that Section 303.190.2 of the MVFRL (the statutory section setting forth requirements for owner’s policies of insurance) only requires an owner’s policy to provide coverage for the specifically designated vehicle (i.e. the vehicle set forth in the declarations page), and that if the insured owns a vehicle that is not involved in an accident and the policy insuring that vehicle includes an exclusion which excludes coverage for claims arising from the use of “owned vehicles” which are not insured by that policy, the provision is enforceable and the second non-accident vehicle policy does not have to pay minimum limits under the MVFRL.
Venue: Jackson County, Missouri; Missouri Court of Appeals (Western District)
Tracy Hayes successfully handled this appeal of the trial court’s summary judgment in favor of her client, Fire Insurance Exchange (FIE). FIE provided homeowners insurance to Caleb Horner. Caleb’s wife, Misty, died shortly after giving birth to their stillborn daughter, Sydney, in their home. Based on religious beliefs, Misty Horner did not receive any medical treatment during the pregnancy or delivery. The Mansfields, Misty’s parents, have brought a wrongful death action against Caleb Horner and various other parties for the wrongful death of Misty and Sydney. At issue in the appeal was whether there was insurance coverage for the wrongful death of Sydney. Pursuant to the terms of the insurance contract, there was an exclusion for injury to “any resident of the residence premises”. FIE denied coverage for both Misty and Sydney as residents of the household. FIE filed a declaratory judgment and the trial court granted summary judgment in favor of FIE. Horner and the Mansfields appealed arguing that the insurance agreement was ambiguous as it related to Sydney because the policy did not define the residency for an unborn child. The Western District Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s ruling that the policy was not ambiguous, that an unborn child resides wherever her mother resides, and therefore, the policy did not provide coverage in the underlying wrongful death claim.
Venue: Leavenworth County, Kansas; Kansas Court of Appeals
In this matter, Plaintiff requested a medical screening panel. The District Court granted the various defendants’ motions to dismiss filed by Tracy Hayes. Plaintiff appealed the dismissal. As an issue of first impression, the Court of Appeals of Kansas held that a dismissal of a request for a medical screening panel was not an appealable order.
Venue: Russell County, Kansas; Kansas Court of Appeals; Supreme Court of Kansas
Tracy Hayes successfully defended this action in which Plaintiff brought against a nursing home for the wrongful death of his brother. Plaintiff failed to designate an expert and Defendant obtained dismissal by summary judgment. The Plaintiff argued that because this was not a “medical malpractice” action, but an “ordinary negligence claim,” therefore experts were not required. The Court rejected this notion and stated that expert testimony is required when the matter is outside the common knowledge of the jury. In the alternative, Plaintiff argued that the standard of care was established by the Adult Care Home Licensure Act. The Court rejected plaintiff’s additional argument that a statute or regulation can set a standard of care and that a private cause of action was not contemplated under the Adult Care Home Licensure Act.
Venue: Greene County, Missouri; Missouri Court of Appeals (Southern District)
Tracy Hayes defended this Declaratory Judgment Action, where claimants were attempting to stack liability policies for a motorcycle and multiple automobile policies. The Missouri Court of Appeals, Southern District, held that the policies’ exclusions applied and nothing triggered the “Other Insurance” clauses in the policy. Therefore, the liability policies did not stack, and Ms. Hayes’ clients were successful.