The Pennsylvania Supreme Court granted allocatur today in Erie Insurance v. Bristol, on the following issue, “In uninsured motorist claims subject to mandatory arbitration, is the statute of limitations tolled only by the commencement of an official judicial action, or may extra-judicial actions also toll the statute of limitations?”
I am appellate counsel, working with Attorney Thomas More Holland, who handled the case at the trial court level. The trial court and the Superior Court had ruled that a motor vehicle insurance carrier’s agreement to arbitrate a claim for uninsured motorist benefits did not toll the statute of limitations. Instead, they ruled that the claim was barred because (1) the UM case had not concluded before the statute of limitations, and therefore (2) plaintiff/claimant was required to file a Complaint against the carrier even though it had agreed to arbitration. This is an issue of first impression in Pennsylvania.