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No need to file cancellation with DMV?May 9, 2020

Matter of Global Liberty Ins. Co. v Ho Suk Shin, 2020 NY Slip Op 02469 (2d Dept. 2020)

The insured removed his vehicle from the policy. A dmv notice was not sent. The insured replaced the vehicle with a commercial vehicle. The carrier changes the policy number to accommodate the new vehicle. Now, the removed vehicle is involved in an accident. Is there coverage? The Appellate Division said no. Not a terribly logical decision, but to make the right the decision, the floodgates of hell would be opened on every removed car case.

“We agree with the Supreme Court’s determination denying that branch of the petition which was to permanently stay arbitration and dismissing the proceeding. Although the cancellation of an insurance policy is not effective as to third parties unless the cancellation is filed with the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles in accordance with Vehicle and Traffic Law § 313(2)(a) (see Vehicle and Traffic Law § 313[3]; Matter of Progressive Northeastern Ins. Co. v Barnes, 30 AD3d 523, 524; Matter of Chubb Group of Ins. Cos. v Williams, 14 AD3d 561, 562), here, the court determined that the insurance policy was not cancelled but rather that the same coverage was transferred to a different vehicle (see Vehicle and Traffic Law § 313[2][a]). Since the only changes to the policy at issue here were administrative—involving the substitution of one vehicle for another under the same policy and changing the number of the policy—State Farm was not required to notify the Department of Motor Vehicles (see 15 NYCRR § 34.1[d][2]; Vehicle and Traffic Law § 313[2][a]) and thus the petitioner’s contentions are without merit.”

“The July 1983 amendments to section 313 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law—changing the requirement for filing a notice of termination to include only policies, “as opposed to any insured vehicle or vehicles under such policy” (Vehicle and Traffic Law § 313[2][a])—govern this action. Thus, this Court’s determination in Matter of Eveready Ins. Co. v Wilson (180 AD2d 796, 797), which addressed the pre-1983 provisions of the statute, is not dispositive here.”

Sorry – I am not convinced. I do not mind losing when I should but if you saw the oral argument, they agreed with our position. As Rivera once told me on another case “Floodgates”.

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