In February of 2013, the Court of Appeals of Kentucky heard a case involving a Louisville car accident that needed the issue of medical benefits decided. (See Hampton v. Watkins, 2013 WL 375585 (Ct. App. 2013)). The Louisville car accident occurred on October 21, 2008. The med pay benefits totaled $1,804.39. The payments were made between March 17, 2010 and March 7, 2011. Id.
The personal injury plaintiffs filed their Louisville car accident lawsuit on July 5, 2011. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment to dismiss the case on October 24, 2011. The Louisville personal injury attorney had filed this personal injury lawsuit over two years after the car accident. Though it is not known when he got hired or retained by the plaintiffs. The trial court granted the motion on December 2, 2011. On appeal this court affirmed the lower court’s ruling for the following reasons.
To dismiss a case via summary judgment is a very serious matter. A summary judgment basically takes the case away from the trier of fact before the evidence is actually heard. Id. In a motion for summary judgment the court must view the evidence in favor of the non-moving party. Id. So, the Louisville personal injury attorney had to show that there was at least some affirmative evidence showing the existence of a genuine issue of material fact. Id.
In this case, the Louisville personal injury attorney filed the lawsuit after the statute of limitations time limit. Pursuant to the Kentucky statute, “an action for tort liability … may be commenced not later than two (2) years after the injury or the death, or the last basic or added reparation payment made by any reparation obligor, whichever occurs later.” (cites omitted). The plaintiff argued that the last medical payment in this Louisville car accident case was made in March of 2011 and the lawsuit was filed in July of 2011, well within the two years. But, the Court did not agree. “The Supreme Court of our state has addressed this issue, however, and has held unequivocally that medical pay insurance does not toll the time frame.” (cites omitted).
There is a difference between receiving personal injury payments (PIP) for the medical bills and receiving med pay benefits. The only thing that tolls the two year statute of limitations is a basic reparations benefit (such as PIP) or added reparations benefit payments. Id. Further, the Court held, that if the plaintiffs did not have or were not entitled to PIP benefits that they then would have been entitled to Kentucky’s Assigned Claims Plan. Id.
If you have been the subject of a Louisville personal injury case, please call and speak to a Louisville personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Andrew Alitowski, P.A. at 888-ASK-ANDREW (888-275-2637) or contact us. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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