N.J. Stat. § 39:6A-5

Current through L. 2020, c. 146.
Section 39:6A-5 - Payment of personal injury protection coverage benefits
a. An insurer may require written notice to be given as soon as practicable after an accident involving an automobile with respect to which the policy affords personal injury protection coverage benefits payable under a standard automobile insurance policy pursuant to section 4 of P.L. 1972, c.70 (C. 34:6A-4 ), medical expense benefits payable under a basic automobile insurance policy pursuant to section 4 of P.L. 1998, c 21 (C. 39:6A-3.1 ) or emergency care medical expense benefits payable under a special automobile insurance policy pursuant to section 45 of P.L. 2003, c 89 (C. 39:6A-3.3 ). In the case of claims for medical expense benefits under any of those policies, written notice shall be provided to the insurer by the treating health care provider no later than 21 days following the commencement of treatment. Notification required under this section shall be made in accordance with regulations adopted by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance and on a form prescribed by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance. Within a reasonable time after receiving notification required pursuant to this act, the insurer shall confirm to the treating health care provider that its policy affords the claimant personal injury protection coverage benefits as required by section 4 of P.L. 1972, c.70 (C. 39:6A-4 ), medical expense benefits pursuant to section 4 of P.L. 1998, c 21 (C. 39:6A-3.1 ) or emergency care medical expense benefits payable under a special automobile insurance policy pursuant to section 45 of P.L. 2003, c 89 (C. 39:6A-3.3 ).
b. For the purposes of this section, notification shall be deemed to be met if a treating health care provider submits a bill or invoice to the insurer for reimbursement of services within 21 days of the commencement of treatment.
c. In the event that notification is not made by the treating health care provider within 21 days following the commencement of treatment, the insurer shall reserve the right to deny, in accordance with regulations established by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance, payment of the claim and the treating health care provider shall be prohibited from seeking any payment directly from the insured. In establishing the standards for denial of payment, the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance shall consider the length of delay in notification, the severity of the treating health care provider's failure to comply with the notification provisions of this act based upon the potential adverse impact to the public and whether or not the provider has engaged in a pattern of noncompliance with the notification provisions of this act. In establishing the regulations necessary to effectuate the purposes of this subsection, the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance shall define specific instances where the sanctions permitted pursuant to this subsection shall not apply. Such instances may include, but not be limited to, a treating medical provider's failure to provide notification to the insurer as required by this act due to the insured's medical condition during the time period within which notification is required.
d. A health care provider who fails to notify the insurer within 21 days and whose claim for payment has been denied by the insurer pursuant to the standards established by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance may, in the discretion of a judge of the Superior Court, be permitted to refile such claim provided that the insurer has not been substantially prejudiced thereby. Application to the court for permission to refile a claim shall be made within 14 days of notification of denial of payment and shall be made upon motion based upon affidavits showing sufficient reasons for the failure to notify the insurer within the period of time prescribed by this act.
e. (Deleted by amendment , P.L. 1998, c 21.)
f. In instances when multiple treating health care providers render services in connection with emergency care, the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance shall designate, through regulation, a process whereby notification by one treating health care provider to the insurer shall be deemed to meet the notification requirements of all the treating health care providers who render services in connection with emergency care.
g. Personal injury protection coverage benefits pursuant to section 4 of P.L. 1972, c.70 (C. 39:6A-4 ) and medical expense benefits pursuant to section 4 of P.L. 1998, c 21 (C. 39:6A-3.1 ) or emergency care medical expense benefits payable under a special automobile insurance policy pursuant to section 45 of P.L. 2003, c 89 (C. 39:6A-3.3 ) shall be overdue if not paid within 60 days after the insurer is furnished written notice of the fact of a covered loss and of the amount of same. If such written notice is not furnished to the insurer as to the entire claim, any partial amount supported by written notice is overdue if not paid within 60 days after such written notice is furnished to the insurer. Any part or all of the remainder of the claim that is subsequently supported by written notice is overdue if not paid within 60 days after such written notice is furnished to the insurer; provided, however, that any payment shall not be deemed overdue where, within 60 days of receipt of notice of the claim, the insurer notifies the claimant or his representative in writing of the denial of the claim or the need for additional time, not to exceed 45 days, to investigate the claim, and states the reasons therefor. The written notice stating the need for additional time to investigate the claim shall set forth the number of the insurance policy against which the claim is made, the claim number, the address of the office handling the claim and a telephone number, which is toll free or can be called collect, or is within the claimant's area code. Written notice to the organization administering dispute resolution pursuant to sections 24 and 25 of P.L. 1998, c 21 (C. 39:6A-5.1 and C. 39:6A-5.2 ) shall satisfy the notice request for additional time to investigate a claim pursuant to this subsection. For the purpose of determining interest charges in the event the injured party prevails in a subsequent proceeding where an insurer has elected a 45-day extension pursuant to this subsection, payment shall be considered overdue at the expiration of the 45-day period or, if the injured person was required to provide additional information to the insurer, within 10 business days following receipt by the insurer of all the information requested by it, whichever is later.

For the purpose of calculating the extent to which any benefits are overdue, payment shall be treated as being made on the date a draft or other valid instrument which is equivalent to payment was placed in the United States mail in a properly addressed, postpaid envelope, or, if not so posted, on the date of delivery.

h. All overdue payments shall bear interest at the percentage of interest prescribed in the Rules Governing the Courts of the State of New Jersey for judgments, awards and orders for the payment of money.
i. All automobile insurers and the Unsatisfied Claim and Judgment Fund shall provide any claimant with the option of submitting a dispute under this section to dispute resolution pursuant to sections 24 and 25 of P.L. 1998, c 21 (C. 39:6A-5.1 and C. 39:6A-5.2 ).

N.J.S. § 39:6A-5

Amended by L. 2003, c. 89, s. 48, eff. 6/9/2003.
L.1972, c.70, s.5; amended 1983, c.362, s.8; 1990, c.8, s.8; 1995, c.407; 1998 c. 21, s. 23.