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Judge Rosen

IN A NO-FAULT action, defendant insurer sought to disqualify plaintiff’s law firm as being a material witness to plaintiff’s counsel’s timely response to its request for verification. The law firm argued that it was unjust to disqualify the firm because one employee may be a potential trial witness. Finding the mailing of the verification response to be a core issue determining whether defendant’s time to deny was tolled or had expired, the court disqualified all attorneys who participated in responding to the verification notice, but not the entire law firm. Although the disqualification rules of the Code of Professional Responsibility would apply if an attorney was needed to support plaintiff’s counsel’s claim of responding to the verification request, the court, citing Kuban v. Miller, held that the reason that a particular attorney should be disqualified should not disqualify plaintiff’s law firm or prevent a non-participant member from acting as trial counsel.

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