Insurance

Duty to Defend Enforceable Even if Duty to Indemnify is Unresolved

A Connecticut court, applying plain language in a subcontract, has held that the sub must defend the general contractor in an injured worker lawsuit, even if the sub’s obligation to indemnify the GC is not yet established. The worker was employed b… Read More
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Failure to Promptly Reserve Rights on Coverage = Loss of Ability to Disclaim

From the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeal comes a reminder that undertaking defense of a claim without any reservation of rights can bar an insurer from disclaiming coverage nine months later – even if the claim was not within the policy language from t… Read More
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Rental Agreement Indemnity – A Setback for Rental Companies

Readers of this blog know that the terms and conditions in equipment rental agreements favor the rental company. Those agreements typically have one-sided indemnity clauses, on the basis that the rental company expects the renting contractor to carry… Read More
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Unfortunate (and Unexpected) Restriction on Additional Insured Status

The New York Court of Appeals, in a split decision, has focused on one word in deciding that a owner’s construction manager was not entitled to additional insured status on the general contractor’s policy. The contract required the GC to include… Read More
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When Will We Learn? Contracts Do Not Modify Insurance Policies

A subcontract required the second-tier sub to include the project owner and general contractor as additional insured parties. But the second-tier sub’s insurance policy had a “privity endorsement,” which allows additional insured status only fo… Read More
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Additional Insured Status Can Arise Indirectly by Lease (or other Written Contract)

Decisions in two separate courts have come to the same conclusion: additional insured status can be conferred via (1) a contract – which was a lease, in each of these cases – requiring Party A to be designated as an additional insured on Party B… Read More
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Insurer’s Duty to Defend Does Not Include Duty to Pursue Counterclaim

At first blush this seems simple: “defend” does not mean “prosecute.” But there is a split among jurisdictions as to whether the insurer’s duty to defend includes the duty to pursue a counterclaim that is factually intertwined with the defe… Read More
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“Arising Out of” is Not the Functional Equivalent of “Proximately Caused by”

The NY Court of Appeals, construing language of an insurance endorsement, has held that the endorsement terms established a proximate cause standard. In the process, the court reiterated that a proximate cause standard is narrower than the phrase “… Read More
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Unsigned Contract = No Proper Insurance Coverage

File this one under “Oops.” The unsigned contract meant that the contractual liability exclusion in the subcontractor’s insurance policy would control, since there was no obligation “assumed in a contract or agreement . . . [where the claim]… Read More
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It Doesn’t Pay to Lie – Insurance Edition

The sad part about decisions abrogating insurance coverage, based on misrepresentations by the insurance applicant, is that innocent third parties often suffer from the lack of coverage. A recent Pennsylvania decision provides one more example. The J… Read More
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