The Second Department determined there was conflicting evidence whether a particular vehicle (owned by McRae) was involved in a hit and run accident involving a parked car in which Williams and Shields were sitting. The alleged registration number matched that of the McRae vehicle which was insured by Liberty Mutual. However, there was evidence the McRae vehicle was being repaired on the day of the accident. A framed issue hearing was therefore required:
GEICO commenced this proceeding pursuant to CPLR article 75 to permanently stay arbitration of the claim for uninsured motorist benefits or, in the alternative, to temporarily stay arbitration pending a framed-issued hearing … . …
GEICO, as the party seeking a stay of arbitration, met its burden of showing the existence of sufficient evidentiary facts to establish a preliminary issue which would justify the stay … . GEICO met this burden by submitting evidence that on the date of the accident, the McRae vehicle was insured by Liberty Mutual.
The burden then shifted to Williams and Shields, as the parties opposing the stay, to rebut that prima facie showing … . Williams and Shields submitted evidence that the McRae vehicle was being repaired at the time of the accident, raising an issue of fact as to whether the McRae vehicle could have been involved in the accident. Since an issue of fact was raised, arbitration should be temporarily stayed, the putative hit-and-run parties joined as respondents, and a framed-issue hearing conducted, before a determination is made on that branch of the petition which was to permanently stay arbitration … . Matter of Government Empls. Ins. Co. v Williams, 2019 NY Slip Op 05660, Second Dept 7-17-19