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    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,966, Reputation: 6056
    Computer Expert and Renaissance Man
     
    #1

    Jun 4, 2016, 04:58 PM
    Insurance Claim
    My daughter was visiting an amusement park near Buffalo, NY today. She was getting off a ride and slipped doing a face plant on the concrete. She wasn't hurt badly, but she did chip her two front teeth.

    She asked the park to give her the name of their insurance carrier so she could file a claim. They refused outright. They said they will file a claim only when and if they receive a letter from an attorney!

    That is preposterous too me. I can't believe they have the right to refuse to release their insurance carrier info or to file a claim on her behalf.

    Anyone know anything on this? I couldn't find anything specific that would support their position or deny it?
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #2

    Jun 4, 2016, 05:50 PM
    I have only heard that this happens more and more, to weed out fraudulent claims, at least some. They don't know if her teeth were chipped before.
    The only one I know about personally was a city bus jumping the curb and ramming into a bookstore.
    I think they can refuse but don't know the law.
    I also hear that as a consequence, claims directly from the claimant are routinely denied.
    So she might need a lawyer anyway.
    I would think it might be available from the NY licensing division, whose job it is to make sure high risk businesses are insured.
    ma0641's Avatar
    ma0641 Posts: 15,681, Reputation: 1012
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    #3

    Jun 4, 2016, 05:54 PM
    They don't have to give you that info. However, I would bet they have medical liability coverage for the same. Does you ticket stub say anything about a hold harmless? No first aid at the location?
    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,966, Reputation: 6056
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    #4

    Jun 4, 2016, 07:34 PM
    I find it really hard to believe that they have the legal right to withhold that info. If you are in a car accident, regardless of fault, you are required to show proof of I was insurance.

    I understand that it is likely the claim will be denied and that it might require a law suit to collect anything. That's not the point. I would like to confirm that they can legally refuse to either provide insurance info or accept a claim. I was annoyed at their arrogance at refusing to provide the info or, at least file a claim on her behalf.

    By the way, the park's medical staff was called in and treated her.
    Alty's Avatar
    Alty Posts: 28,318, Reputation: 5972
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    #5

    Jun 5, 2016, 02:09 AM
    Not sure about US laws, but in Canada I know that this would be the norm. Here your daughter would have to go to a dentist, get a quote for the cost of the repairs, and then insurance would get involved, and sadly, she likely wouldn't win unless you could prove that she tripped because of the parks negligence.

    An amusement park will have all sorts of protection in place with their insurance. If they were to be held responsible for every person that tripped while in their park, they'd have no business. So you really need to read the fine print.

    Was the trip caused because of their negligence, or did she simply trip? Was the floor slippery, was there an object that shouldn't have been there that made her trip? Or did she simply trip?

    I would get a lawyer, after finding out the cost to repair her teeth, and then hope that the amusement park covers the cost. If it went to court I don't see her winning unless she can prove that she tripped because of their negligence.
    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,966, Reputation: 6056
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    #6

    Jun 5, 2016, 02:34 AM
    I don't see her winning either. That's not the point. The best we can hope for is that their carrier decides to settle it as a nuisance claim. I'm just hoping they might kick in enough to cover her deductibles. And even that is a faint hope.

    My ire is directed at their refusal to provide insurance information. I don't believe they have, or should have, that right.
    cdad's Avatar
    cdad Posts: 12,701, Reputation: 1438
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    #7

    Jun 5, 2016, 04:52 AM
    Here is some specific information on what your looking for.

    Injury Liability For Amusement Park Accidents - AllLaw.com

    Laws vary by State.
    AK lawyer's Avatar
    AK lawyer Posts: 12,592, Reputation: 977
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    #8

    Jun 5, 2016, 05:30 AM
    She asked the park to give her the name of their insurance carrier so she could file a claim. They refused outright. They said they will file a claim only when and if they receive a letter from an attorney!
    OK, so talk to an attorney about sending them a letter (See below). Without more of a theory of liability (what they negligently did or failed to do, for example), there is no reason to treat your claim seriously.

    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    ...
    My ire is directed at their refusal to provide insurance information. I don't believe they have, or should have, that right.
    The vehicle insurance situation is an exception. Other than that, one has no duty to disclose insurance information to a would-be plaintiff.

    It reminds me of when my daughter was younger, perhaps 10 or so. She was riding her bike in a residential neighborhood when a driver was driving much faster than he should have. My daughter hit the side of his vehicle and he demanded my insurance information. I don't recall if I had renter's insurance or not, but I was not going to tell him that. I simply refused to tell him. That was the end of it.

    OP should treat the amusement park the way I forced that driver to treat me: consider the other party self-insured and take it from there. OP should consult with a law firm which specializes in personal injury. Keep in mind that such firms typically offer a free initial consultation, and then take cases (which they believe have merit) on a contingent-fee basis. In other words, there is no good reason why the OP should not consult with an attorney, who may well make a demand letter, work with the insurance adjuster, and get a settlement.
    Fr_Chuck's Avatar
    Fr_Chuck Posts: 81,304, Reputation: 7692
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    #9

    Jun 5, 2016, 06:50 PM
    There is no requirement to give someone your insurance company. There is to post workers comp information.

    So just sue. Get an attorney and sue for additional damages, lost work (if any) emotional distress, it ruined her day at the park. And so on.

    A 200 claim with attorney costs will be 20,000 or more, perhaps punitive damages
    AK lawyer's Avatar
    AK lawyer Posts: 12,592, Reputation: 977
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    #10

    Jun 6, 2016, 04:10 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Fr_Chuck View Post
    ...
    ... A 200 claim with attorney costs will be 20,000 or more, perhaps punitive damages
    Doubtful. And most states, including New York, don't award prevailing party's attorney fees, in most cases.

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