Sunday, March 18, 2018
STATE FARM GUARANTY INSURANCE COMPANY VS. HEREFORD INSURANCE COMPANY, ET AL. A-3749-16T3
STATE FARM GUARANTY INSURANCE COMPANY VS. HEREFORD
INSURANCE COMPANY, ET AL.
The court holds that the New Jersey Uniform Arbitration Act, N.J.S.A. 2A:23B-1 to -32, does not require an arbitrator to hold an in-person hearing at a physical location. Thus, unless the parties contract for an in-person arbitration hearing, or they show specialized need for such a hearing, arbitrators can conduct hearings by telephone conference or by other electronic means.
Accordingly, the court affirms an order that denied the application of defendant Hereford Insurance Company to compel an arbitration organization, Arbitration Forums, Inc., to hold an in-person arbitration hearing concerning the reimbursement of personal injury protection (PIP) benefits.