Originally posted 2008-07-29 12:12:10. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
Liability insurers gotta deny coverage:
As the Trademark Blog reports, American Guarantee & Liability Insurance Co. is balking at the prospect of paying any part of the $305M judgment Adidas America, Inc., obtained against Payless Shoesource, Inc., earlier this year. The insurer filed suit on July 24 in the District of Kansas for a declaration that it is not liable under any of its policies.
Of course they did. It is entirely rational for them to do so. $305M is a lot of gelt. You don’t get that from an insurance company unless a judge makes them give it to you, or they’re afraid a judge might may them give you more. Ever.
And, as Michael Atkins points out at the link, they do appear to have prima facie grounds for non-coverage. “Advertising injury” coverage is a funny thing.
So is coverage litigation, if you can get it. Not so much funny (though all commercial litigation delivers its share of belly laughs!) as fun, fun, fun! It is as close to the perfect assignment for a commercial litigator there is. The money is really out there, both sides are massively incentivized, early settlement is essentially unthinkable, there are tons of legal and factual issues. You can train a generation of associates on just one of these cases.
Just make sure you get someone who really knows how to read an insurance policy and draw up a coherent coverage chart.
Ah, to be in Kansas in the fall…