In the morning of October in 1969, a 40-year old woman was involved in a car accident and sustained serious personal injuries while operating her automobile eastbound on New York State Route 17. According to sources, the automobile struck a cement brick located on the roadway.
The Staten Island woman filed an action against a company manufacturing split limestone alleging that it had negligently loaded concrete building blocks upon a truck that it owned or controlled, with the result that one or more of these blocks fell on to the pavement of Route 17 and caused the unfortunate automobile accident. The manufacturing company has a policy of liability insurance.
An investigation on the accident was held and showed that prior to the day of the accident, the truck, while heading eastbound on Route 17, broke down a short distance to the east of Binghamton on Route 17. The truck was carrying split limestone, for delivery. The truck was towed to another location and the manufacturer borrowed another truck from a car leasing company. The borrowed truck was the one involved in the accident. The borrowed truck was also insured.
The Manhattan insurance company denied liability and alleged that the borrowed truck had not passed the scene of the accident until after the accident had occurred. However, the investigation on the part of the woman showed that the borrowed truck, loaded with split limestone, passed the scene of the Truck accident before its occurrence.
An action was also filed against the insurance company of the truck involved in the accident. However, the truck’s insurance company asked the court to dismiss the complaint saying it did not know or was not notified of the accident or the facts of the accident. The woman also said she did not know that the truck was insured.
The court found that the woman, being primarily involved in the accident, had the responsibility to inquire as to the existence of insurance coverage as soon as she knew that the truck involved in the truck accident was insured. The court ruled that the woman cannot be excused for failing to know that if any truck under the control of the manufacturing company was involved in the accident, it had to be the truck borrowed from a leasing company. The woman’s failure to notify the leasing company and its insurer of their potential liability so they could conduct their own investigation until almost 13 months later constitutes a violation of the notice conditions of the policy as matter of law.
The court pointed out that an insurance policy requirement that notice be given as soon as practicable requires that notice be given within a reasonable time, and failure to give such notice, it is well settled, vitiates the contracts as to both the insured and the party recovering a judgment against the insured.
Suffering personal injuries caused by someone else and being involved in a lawsuit arising from those injuries is difficult for all. New York Car Accident Attorneys will stand by you and help see you through your case. These Attorneys can argue your side and make sure you and your loved ones are compensated.
Stephen Bilkis & Associates with its NY Personal Injury Lawyers, has convenient offices throughout the New York Metropolitan area including Corona, NY. Our Attorneys can provide you with advice to guide you through situations where an injury resulted because of another’s negligence. Without our Attorneys, you may lose your rights which may cost you a significant amount of money.
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