The Rogak Report: 01 Oct 2007 ** No-Fault - Election of Remedies **
- WE MAKE NEW LAW IN QUEENS: PRIOR, WITHDRAWN ARBITRATION BARS
LITIGATION OF MEDICAL BILLS
Argo Medical PC a/a/o Johanny Stengle v. New York Central Mutual Fire
Insurance Company (Civil Court, Queens County) (Lebedeff, j) (Index
If a medical provider places a bill into arbitration against a no-
fault insurer, then withdraws the arbitration "without prejudice,"
may it then bring suit on that bill? Other courts have said "no,"
but the issue had never been decided in Queens County, until today.
Granting our Motion To Dismiss, the Court held, "Plaintiff previously
placed this claim into arbitration and withdrew it without
prejudice. Generally, once a claimant places a bill into arbitration
he has elected his remedy and may not litigate any future bill on the
same claim or occurrence. Roggio v. Nationwide Ins. Co., 66 N.Y.2d
260. This is true even if the prior arbitration claim was withdrawn
without prejudice. Pueblo Med. Treatment a/s/o Garcia v. State Farm
Ins. Co., 2006 NY Slip Op 51553(U) (App. Term, 1st Dept); A.B.
Medical a/s/o Samuel Charles v. New York Central Mutual Fire Ins.
Co., 12 Misc. 3d 500 (Civil Court, Kings Co.). As it is undisputed
that this plaintiff placed this bill into arbitration previously, it
has elected its remedy and this suit is dismissed without prejudice
to re-file in arbitration."