The following is an excerpt from the Opinion, and presents the basic issues involved:
1. Do the New York State Electronic Signatures and Records Act ("ESRA") and the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (E-Sign) obligate an insurer to accept electronic records and signatures in connection with No-Fault insurance claim forms?
2. May a digitally reproduced NF-AOB serve as an original document for purposes of a verification request by an insurer under Section 65-3.11(c) of N.Y. Comp. Codes R. & Regs. tit. 11, Part 65 (Regulation 68)?
1. No. Neither E-Sign nor ESRA obligates an insurer to accept electronic records or signatures.
2. Yes, provided that it is accurate and accessible as required under Section 7001(d)(1) of E-Sign and the insurer consents to the use of an electronic record as an original document.
The Opinion is rather thorough, so all interested are recommended to read it in full. Note that the question is presented on behalf of "MRI Corporation X" and that particular entity uses digital signatures of its doctors to 'sign' various documents. "MRI Corporation X" basically appears to be asking for permission to use scanned-in signatures of its doctors, a practice it is already admittedly employing. One can only wonder who "MRI Corporation X" is.
On what is surely an entirely unrelated matter, here is an update for all those interested regarding Andrew Carothers, M.D., P.C. Please note that the plaintiff in Matter of Carothers v Insurance Cos. Represented by Bruno Gerbino & Soriano LLP & Freiberg & Peck LLP, 2006 NY Slip Op 26372 (Civ. Ct., Richmond Cty., 2006) recently brought a motion, by Order to Show Cause, described therein as one to renew and reargue said decision. Prior to the return date (this past Friday, November 17, 2006 at 2:30 PM), however, plaintiff withdrew the motion. Both a Notice of Appeal and a purported Amended Notice of Appeal are currently pending. No stay has been granted either by the Appellate Term or the Civil Court. Under the terms of the subject Order, today is the final day by which Dr. Carothers is to be produced for an EBT. Anyone taking bets?