Fraudulent prcourement defneseMarch 19, 2015

“In applying for the automobile insurance policy in Pennsylvania, the insured had indicated on her application that she resided in Pennsylvania and owned two vehicles which were garaged in Pennsylvania. The only connection between the policy and New York State was that plaintiff’s assignor, the insured’s husband, was injured while driving one of the insured vehicles in New York.”

“The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has held that while an automobile insurance policy may be retroactively rescinded as to an insured who has made a misrepresentation material to the acceptance of risk by the insurer, the policy may not be retroactively rescinded with respect to third parties “who are innocent of trickery, and injured through no fault of their own” (see Erie Ins. Exch. v Lake, 543 Pa 363, 375, 671 A2d 681, 687 [1996]). Defendant, in its motion papers, set forth facts demonstrating that the insured was the actual perpetrator of a fraud, and that, based thereon, defendant had rescinded the policy in accordance with Pennsylvania law.”

Invariably, the choice of law will militate in favor of the State where the vehicle was registered.  Thus, unless the issue involves an Assignor who said he lived upstate or Long Island as opposed to Brooklyn, the choice of law question will militate in favor of the state where Claimant lives.