Insurer's Duty to Defend Additional Insureds: Navigating Differing Court Standards to Determine When Duty is Triggered

Advocating Coverage From Perspectives of Insurers and Additional Insured Claimants

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will analyze how courts assess when the insurer’s duty to defend is triggered with respect to a claim by an additional insured. The panel will outline the various circumstances in which resort to extrinsic evidence may be necessary.

Description

The standards used by courts to determine whether the insurer has a duty to defend the named insured vary by jurisdiction, but conventional wisdom holds that the same standards apply to a determination regarding the duty to defend additional insureds. Or do they? Assessing the duty to defend an additional insured raises unique issues not present in the case of the named insured. The status of a party seeking coverage under an additional insured blanket endorsement or some other contractual arrangement with the named insured may not be readily apparent from the policy.

Further, additional insured endorsements are a great source of litigation as the parties wrangle over the wording of the endorsement. The endorsement may limit coverage to circumstances involving liability related to the conduct of the named insured or to conduct during a specific period of time.

Thus, even courts that adhere to the four corners of the complaint and/or policy rule may be open to considering extrinsic evidence in assessing whether the insurer’s duty to defend and additional insured is triggered. There is, however, very little uniformity among courts with respect to these issues.

Listen as our authoritative panel of insurance practitioners examines the approach employed by courts in determining whether the insurer’s duty to defend is triggered with respect to a claim by an additional insured. The panel will analyze the various circumstances in which courts should and will resort to extrinsic evidence.

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Outline

  1. Overview of standards used by courts to determine an insurer’s duty to defend
    1. Four corners/eight corners rules
    2. Extrinsic evidence
  2. Determining whether the policy grants the party additional insured status
  3. Determining whether there are limitations to this AI status
  4. Determining whether there are limitations to the scope of coverage

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • Standards used by courts to determine an insurer’s duty to defend an additional insured claimant
  • Circumstances in which extrinsic evidence is necessary for courts to determine whether the insured’s duty to defend an additional insured is triggered
  • Circumstances in which additional insured endorsements may limit or negate coverage of the AI claimant

Faculty

Daniel A. Johnson, Esq.
Daniel A. Johnson, Esq.

Jenner & Block

Mr. Johnson is experienced in representing policyholders in insurance coverage matters and has also worked on various...  |  Read More

Max H. Stern
Max H. Stern

Partner
Duane Morris

Mr. Stern is the head of the firm’s Insurance Litigation Division.  As a trial and appellate lawyer, he has...  |  Read More

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