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Vol. 9 - Issue 6
September 23, 2020


Court Finds Russian Interference In The Commercial General Liability Policy’s Insuring Agreement


This federal court’s observation from last week, that reading the CGL Policy’s insuring agreement resembles unpacking a Russian nesting doll, makes sense.  I never thought of it this way.

“The dispute turns on how the Court unpacks a matryoshka doll of insurance tort terminologies. Continental’s and USF&G’s policies state that they cover bodily injuries and property damage if they are caused by an ‘occurrence’ taking place in the ‘policy territory.’ The term ‘occurrence’ in both policies is defined as an ‘accident, including losses caused by continuous or repeated exposure to the same harmful conditions.’  Though the term ‘accident’ is at the heart of whether Defendants’ duty to defend or indemnify terminated, it is undefined in the policy. . . . Black’s Law Dictionary defines ‘accident’ as: ‘An unintended and unforeseen injurious occurrence; something that does not occur in the usual course of events or that could not be reasonably anticipated; any unwanted or harmful event occurring suddenly, as a collision, spill, fall or the like, irrespective of cause of blame.”  Ludlum v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., No. 17-1243 (W.D. Pa. Sept. 17, 2020).

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