November 13, 2007
BETHSAIDA RODRIGUEZ, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
TIFFANY S. ANDERSON, DEFENDANT-RESPONDENT.
On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Essex County, Docket No. L-6865-04.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Argued October 23, 2007
Before Judges Grall and Chambers.
Plaintiff Bethsaida Rodriguez appeals from a final order granting summary judgment in favor of defendant Tiffany S. Anderson and dismissing plaintiff's complaint. Judge Furnari concluded that plaintiff presented insufficient evidence to maintain a suit for non-economic loss under the Automobile Insurance Cost Reduction Act, N.J.S.A. 39:6A-1.1 to -35.
We affirm substantially for the reasons stated by Judge Furnari in his oral decision of November 17, 2006. Considering the evidential materials presented on the motion under the standards established in Serrano v. Serrano, 183 N.J. 508, 516 (2005) and in the light most favorable to plaintiff, Brill v. Guardian Life Ins. Co. of Am., 142 N.J. 520, 540 (1995), there was no basis for a reasonable juror to conclude, on the basis of objective clinical evidence, that plaintiff sustained "a permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability." N.J.S.A. 39:6A-8(a). Under this statute, "[a]n injury [is] considered permanent when the body part . . . has not healed to function normally and will not heal to function normally with further medical treatment." Ibid. See Serrano supra, 183 N.J. at 516.
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