State Statutes Redefine “Occurrence” To Create Defect Coverage

December 2011 | Category: News

In many states, courts have found that the faulty workmanship of a construction contractor that damages the contractor’s own work is not an accident and, therefore, not an “occurrence.” General Sec. Indem. Co. of Arizona v. Mountain States Mut. Cas. Co., 205 P.3d 529 (Colo.Ct.App. 2009); Auto-Owners Ins. Co. v. Home Pride Companies, Inc., 268 Neb. 528, 684 N.W.2d 571 (Neb. 2004) (faulty workmanship, standing alone, is not covered under a standard CGL policy); Oak Crest Const. Co. v. Austin Mut. Ins. Co., 329 Or. 620, 998 P.2d 1254 (Or. 2000) (no occurrence where insured sought cost of correcting subcontractor's deficient work); Kvaerner Metals Div. of Kvaerner U.S., Inc. v. Commercial Union Ins. Co., 589 Pa. 317, 908 A.2d 888 (Pa. 2006).

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Court Agrees that Bankruptcy Trustee’s Action is “Non-Core” in IndyMac Bancorp Case

November 2011 | Category: Recent Successes

Alfred Siegel v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyds (C.D. Cal. 2011)

A California federal court agreed with BatesCarey LLP's arguments that a declaratory judgment action filed by IndyMac Bancorp's bankruptcy trustee was "non-core" to the bankruptcy. Therefore the court found that judicial efficiency supported withdrawing the reference to the bankruptcy court. After the reference was withdrawn, the trustee voluntarily dismissed the action.

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Court Says Umbrella Insurer Has No Duty to Settle When Primary Insurer Controls Defense

August 2011 | Category: Recent Successes

Kevin Fox v. Will County State’s Atty. (N.D. Ill. 2011)

BatesCarey LLP's client issued an excess policy to an insured county, which was sued, along with two sheriff deputies, for civil rights violations by a man falsely accused of murder. The primary insurer paid for the county's and deputies' defense, which resulted in an uncovered multi-million dollar punitive damage award. The insured's assignee argued that the excess insurer had failed in bad faith to accept a settlement offer and was required to pay the punitive damage award. BatesCarey LLP argued that the excess insurer did not control the defense and thus could not have breached any duty to settle. An Illinois federal court adopted BatesCarey LLP's reasoning on summary judgment and held that the excess insurer was not obligated to pay the punitive damage award.

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Court Agrees that “Follow the Fortunes” Does Not Require Payment of Additional Expenses

May 2011 | Category: Recent Successes

Pacific Emp. Ins. Co. v. GLOBAL Reinsurance Corp. (E.D. Pa. 2011)

BatesCarey LLP obtained judgment for its reinsurer client by convincing a federal court that the "follow the fortunes" doctrine did not require the reinsurer to pay expenses in addition to the limits of liability on a facultative certificate. By moving for judgment on the pleadings, BatesCarey LLP foreclosed the cedent from taking any discovery and obtained victory immediately after the cedent filed its responsive pleading.

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