Imperium Ins. Co. v Innovative Chiropractic Servs., P.C.
2014 NY Slip Op 50697(U) [43 Misc 3d 137(A)]
Decided on April 30, 2014
Appellate Term, First Department
Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.
This opinion is uncorrected and will not be published in the printed Official Reports.

Decided on April 30, 2014

PRESENT: Lowe, III, Schoenfeld, Ling-Cohan, JJ

Imperium Insurance Company f/k/a Delos Insurance Company, Plaintiff-Appellant, - -


Innovative Chiropractic Services, P.C. and Park Slope Advanced Medical, PLLC, Defendants-Respondents.

Plaintiff appeals from an order of the Civil Court of the City of New York, New York County (Andrea Masley, J.), entered June 4, 2013, which denied its motion for entry of a default judgment against defendants.

Per Curiam.

Order (Andrea Masley, J.), entered June 4, 2013, affirmed, without costs.

The plaintiff insurer commenced the underlying actions, consolidated below, seeking declaratory relief and review by way of trial de novo of five separately issued master arbitrator's awards issued in favor of defendant medical providers on their claims for first-party no-fault benefits. While Civil Court had jurisdiction to entertain the lawsuit (see CCA 212-a; Brooks v Rivera, 40 Misc 3d 133[A], 2013 NY Slip Op 51191[U] [App Term, 1st Dept 2013]), we sustain the dismissal of the consolidated actions on the merits. De novo review of a master arbitrator's award is limited to the grounds set forth in CPLR article 75 unless the award is in the amount of $5,000 or more, in which case the dispute is subject to a "plenary judicial adjudication" pursuant to Insurance Law § 5106(b) (see Matter of Greenberg [Ryder Truck Rental], 70 NY2d 573, 576-577 [1987]). Since none of the master arbitrator's awards giving rise to these actions met or exceeded the statutory threshold sum of $5,000, de novo review was unavailable, and the individual complaints served by plaintiff seeking such relief did not state a viable cause of action. In this posture, the court was warranted in dismissing the consolidated actions upon plaintiff's motion for entry of a default judgment (see generally Aprea v New York State Bd. of Elections, 103 AD3d 1059, 1061 [2013]).

Decision Date: April 30, 2014