New York State Seal
STATE OF NEW YORK
INSURANCE DEPARTMENT
25 BEAVER STREET
NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10004

George E. Pataki
Governor

Howard Mills
Superintendent

The Office of General Counsel issued the following opinion on June 7 2005, representing the position of the New York State Insurance Department.

Re: Applicability of Regulation 64 to a Motor Vehicle Accident

Question Presented:

Under the following circumstances, would N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. tit. 11, Part 216 (2004) (Regulation 64) (hereinafter "Regulation 64") apply to claim handling of motor vehicle accidents in New York State (hereinafter "NYS") and outside of NYS?

Conclusion:

See below.

Facts -- Situation One:

A motor vehicle accident in New York State involves a NYS resident and a non-New York State (hereinafter "non-NYS") resident. The non-NYS resident has an automobile insurance policy issued in the non-NYS resident's State from an insurer authorized in both NYS and the non-NYS resident's State.

First Question:

Does Regulation 64 apply to the handling of a first-party physical damage insurance claim by the non-NYS resident under his/her automobile insurance policy?

First Conclusion:

No. Regulation 64 does not apply to the claim handling.

Second Question:

Does Regulation 64 apply to handling of a third-party property damage or bodily injury liability insurance claim by the NYS resident against the non-NYS resident's automobile insurance policy?

Second Conclusion:

Yes. Regulation 64 does apply to the claim handling.

Facts -- Situation Two:

A motor vehicle accident outside NYS involves a NYS resident and a non-NYS resident. The NYS resident has an automobile insurance policy issued in NYS from an insurer authorized in both NYS and the non-NYS resident's State.

Third Question:

Does Regulation 64 apply to handling of a first-party physical damage insurance claim by the NYS resident against the NYS resident's automobile insurance policy?

Third Conclusion:

Yes. Regulation 64 does apply to the claim handling.

Fourth Question:

Does Regulation 64 apply to handling of a third-party property damage or bodily injury liability insurance claim by the non-NYS resident against the NYS resident's automobile insurance policy?

Fourth Conclusion:

No. Regulation 64 does not apply to the claim handling.

Fifth Question:

Does Regulation 64 apply when a New York State insured has been sued by an injured party?

Fifth Conclusion:

Regulation 64 does not apply where the parties are in litigation.

Analysis:

Regulation 64 provides protection to NYS insureds with respect to claims under their policies. Accordingly, Regulation 64 applies to all first-party physical damage claims of NYS insureds regardless of where the accident occurs.

Regulation 64 also protects innocent third parties who have liability insurance claims as a result of accidents in NYS. Hence, Regulation 64 applies to all liability insurance claims arising out of accidents in NYS. Where the accident occurs outside of NYS, this State defers to the liability insurance claim handling procedures of the other jurisdiction. Regulation 64 does not apply to claim handling once a lawsuit has been initiated.

For further information one may contact Senior Attorney Robert Freedman at the New York City Office.