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STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY v. THEODORE ZACHARY (12/09/87)

filed: December 9, 1987.

STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY, APPELLANT,
v.
THEODORE ZACHARY, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order entered January 27, 1987 in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Civil Division, at No. 3297 September Term, 1986.

COUNSEL

Lee H. Rosenau, Philadelphia, for appellant.

George Gerasimowicz, Jr., Spring City, for appellee.

McEwen, Olszewski and Del Sole, JJ.

Author: Del Sole

[ 370 Pa. Super. Page 388]

This is an appeal from the Order denying Appellant-State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company's*fn1 Petition to Compel Medical Examination pursuant to the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Act. See 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 1796. The record shows that Appellee-Theodore Zachary*fn2 sustained injuries in an automobile accident on November 15, 1985. At the time of the accident, Zachary was insured by State Farm and thereafter made claims for benefits from his insurer.

Subsequent to ten months of treatment for soft tissue injuries, State Farm filed its Petition for Medical Examination. Pursuant to Pa.R.C.P. 1028, Zachary filed preliminary objections challenging the trial court's jurisdiction to entertain State Farm's petition. By its January 27, 1987 Order, the trial court denied the preliminary objections. In addition, the underlying petition was denied without prejudice.*fn3 This timely appeal by State Farm follows.

On appeal, Appellant raises the following issues:

1. Whether "good cause" under the Pennsylvania Financial Responsibility Act was shown when the claimant indicated that the amount of his bills were undetermined, he continued to treat for over ten months, and requests to supply the petitioner with all medical bills and reports were ignored; and,

2. Whether the trial court abused its discretion in overturning all prior guidelines for the determination of

[ 370 Pa. Super. Page 389]

"good cause" by unilaterally requiring a doctor to review all medical records before an examination would issue.

Preliminarily, we observe that an order granting or denying a petition to compel a medical examination under 75 Pa.C.S.A. § 1796 is a final appealable order. Keystone Insurance Co. v. Caputo, 365 Pa. Super. 431, 529 A.2d 1134, ...


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