Ideal Mut. Ins. Co. v. Royal Globe Ins. Co., 211 N.J.Super. 336, 511 A.2d 1205 (App. Div. 1986)
Practice Areas: Automobile Liability/UM/UIM
Insurer brought action against coinsurers for declaratory determination of their liability for contribution of equitable pro rata share of PIP benefits paid by insurer to insured for injuries sustained in automobile accident, and defendant coinsurer asserted that action was time barred. The Superior Court, Law Division, Union County, entered summary judgment adjudicating coinsurer liable for contribution, and coinsurers appealed. The Superior Court, Appellate Division, Antell, P.J.A.D., held that: (1) timeliness of insurer’s right to relief was governed by equitable principles applicable to arbitration, pursuant to statute specifically providing that right to recovery of contribution may be enforced only by intercompany arbitration or intercompany agreement, notwithstanding statutes of limitation governing time for actions for payment of benefits and for recovery in contract, and (2) judgment already entered would not be disturbed, despite statute providing that right to recovery of contribution may be enforced only by intercompany arbitration or intercompany agreement, where insurer’s right to secure contribution for coinsurers by other means had not been challenged by coinsurer except by assertion in answer that claims were barred by Automobile Reparation Reform Act, and only issue raised on appeal was timeliness of the action.