Distinguishing Hawaii Law, New Jersey Finds Anti-Assignment Clause Ineffective

March 22, 2017
Tred R. Eyerly – Insurance Law Hawaii

The New Jersey Supreme Court found that an anti-assignment provision could not be applied to bar a post-loss claim assignment. Givaudan Fragrances Corp. v. Aetna Cas. & Sur. Co., 2017 N.J. LEXIS 121 (N.J. Feb. 1, 2017). In reaching its decision, the court distinguished a decision from the Hawaii Supreme Court enforcing consent-to-assignment clauses and failing to recognize any post-loss exception to such clauses. See Del Monte Fresh Produce (Hawaii), Inc. v. Fireman's Fund Ins. Co., 183 P.3d 734 (Haw. 2007).

Plaintiff Givaudan Fragrances Corporation (Fragrances) was sued for environmental contamination at a manufacturing site. A related corporate entity had operated the facility from the 1960s to 1990. Fragrances sought coverage under policies issued to its predecessor. The predecessor attempted to assign to Fragrances post-loss rights under the policies. The insurers resisted, claiming the predecessor was the named insured, not Fragrances, and that the insurers did not consent to an assignment of the predecessor's policies.

Mr. Eyerly may be contacted at te@hawaiilawyer.com


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