Vladenn Med. Supply Corp. v State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 2016 NY Slip Op 50928(U) http://www.courts.state.ny.us/reporter/3dseries/2016/2016_50928.htm
Plaintiff/provider appealed dismissal from a motion for summary judgment. The Civil Court found that Plaintiff failed to appear for duly scheduled examinations under oath (EUOs). On appeal, plaintiff argued that defendant failed to prove that it mailed its EUO scheduling letters and denial of claim forms, that plaintiff failed to appear for the EUOs, that defendant lacked justification for its EUO requests and defendant’s motion should have been denied pursuant to CPLR 3212 (f) since Plaintiff had not yet received discovery regarding the reasonableness of defendant’s EUO requests and that defendant failed to prove that plaintiff had willfully obstructed defendant’s investigation.
The Court stated:
Contrary to plaintiff’s arguments, the affidavits submitted by defendant established that the EUO scheduling letters and the denial of claim forms had been timely mailed in accordance with defendant’s standard office practices and procedures (see St. Vincent’s Hosp. of Richmond v Government Empls. Ins. Co., 50 AD3d 1123 ). In addition, the affirmation submitted by defendant’s attorney, who was present in his office to conduct the EUO of plaintiff on the scheduled dates, was sufficient to establish that plaintiff had failed to appear.
With respect to plaintiff’s contention that defendant failed to demonstrate justification for its EUO requests, in a similar case involving the failure of a provider’s assignor to appear for EUOs, the Appellate Division, Second Department, has held that, to establish its prima facie entitlement to summary judgment dismissing the complaint on the ground that a provider’s assignor failed to appear for an EUO, an insurer need only establish “as a matter of law that it twice duly demanded an [EUO] from the [provider’s] assignor, who had allegedly been injured in a motor vehicle accident, that the assignor twice failed to appear, and that the [insurer] issued a [*2]timely denial of the claims arising from the [provider’s] treatment of the assignor” (Interboro Ins. Co. v Clennon, 113 AD3d 596, 597 ). A review of the record in Interboro Ins. Co. v Clennon reveals that, in that case, the provider argued, as does plaintiff herein, that the insurer’s motion should have been denied pursuant to CPLR 3212 (f), as the provider had not received discovery regarding the reasonableness of defendant’s EUO requests, and that, even if there had been a failure to appear for two duly scheduled EUOs, the insurer had to show that the failure to appear constituted willful obstruction of the insurer’s investigation. In finding for the insurer, the Appellate Division, Second Department, stated the following:
“the [providers] failed to establish that summary judgment was premature in light of outstanding discovery. A party who contends that a summary judgment motion is premature is required to demonstrate that discovery might lead to relevant evidence or [that] the facts essential to justify opposition to the motion were exclusively within the knowledge and control of the movant’ (Cajas-Romero v Ward, 106 AD3d 850, 852 ; see CPLR 3212 [f]). Here, in support of their contention that the [insurer’s] motion was premature, the [providers] did not establish what information they hoped to discover that would demonstrate the existence of a triable issue of fact” (113 AD3d at 597).
Similarly, in the instant case, plaintiff “did not establish what information [it] hoped to discover that would demonstrate the existence of a triable issue of fact” (id.; cf. American Tr. Ins. Co. v Jaga Med. Servs., P.C., 128 AD3d 441 ).
The objective justification or reason for the EUO should have been demanded at the verification level. See the recent decision in Avalon Radiology, PC. v Ameriprise Ins. Co., 2016 NY Slip Op 26182 http://www.nycourts.gov/reporter/3dseries/2016/2016_26182.htm