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Tomassini v. Saunders

Decided: January 26, 1994.

ANNA TOMASSINI, PLAINTIFF,
v.
PAUL H. SAUNDERS, THE UNSATISFIED CLAIM AND JUDGEMENT FUND BOARD, KENNETH D. MERIN, COMMISSIONER OF INSURANCE, DEFENDANTS, PATRICK O'HARA, PLAINTIFF, V. PAUL H. SAUNDERS, JOHN DOE (A FICTITIOUS NAME), UNSATISFIED CLAIM & JUDGEMENT FUND BOARD AND MARKET TRANSITION FACILITY (IMPROPERLY DENOMINATED NEW JERSEY AUTOMOBILE FULL INSURANCE UNDERWRITING ASSOC., DEFENDANTS.



Menza

Menza

CIVIL ACTION

MENZA, J.S.C.

On January 28, 1991, the plaintiffs, pedestrians in this consolidated action, were injured when they were struck by an automobile owned and operated by the defendant, Paul Saunders, (Saunders). Prior to that date Saunders had been insured by Market Transition Facility of New Jersey (MTF). Plaintiffs brought suit against Saunders, MTF and the Unsatisfied Claim and Judgment Fund (UCJF), the latter because MTF contended it did not insure Saunders on the date of the accident. On December 2, 1993, a hearing was held to determine whether Saunders was insured by MTF on the date in question.

The defendant Saunders was insured with MTF from December 4, 1989 to December 4, 1990. MTF contends that on October 21, 1990, Computer Services Corporation (CSC), MTF's servicing carrier, mailed Saunders a renewal quotation which stated that payment for the new policy was due on or before December 4, 1990. MTF contends that Saunders did not pay the renewal premium and therefore was not covered by MTF on the date of the accident.

MTF produced only one witness at the hearing, a CSC employee. She testified with regard to a computer record pertaining to the Saunders' policy. Specifically, she testified that the computer printout was made in the regular course of business, and except for the insurance application which was on microfilm, was the only document which MTF maintained concerning the Saunders' policy.

The witness had no independent knowledge of the facts concerning the Saunders' policy.

The computer printout states the following:

POLICY HISTORY SUMMARY AS OF 09 09 92

POLICY CS11435792 INSURED SAUNDERS PAUL H VERSION ARCHIVE

CURRENT TERM - FROM 12/04/90 TO 12/04/91

TRANS PROCESS CHANGE AMOUNT AMOUNT WRITTEN

SEL LOC DATE DATE BILLED PAID ...


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