Illinois Court Addresses Rip-And-Tear Coverage And Existence Of An “Occurrence” In Defective Product Suit

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Brian Bassett analyzes the case Lexington Ins. Co. v. Chi. Flameproof & Wood Specialties Corp.

September 4, 2018
Brian Bassett - TLSS Insurance Law Blog

In Lexington Ins. Co. v. Chi. Flameproof & Wood Specialties Corp., 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 135871, 2018 WL 3819109 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 10, 2018), the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois found that rip-and-tear costs could qualify as covered “property damage,” but the court rejected coverage for claims that the insured intentionally sold a noncompliant product as the suit did not allege an “occurrence.”

Lexington Insurance Company (“Lexington”) issued a CGL policy to Chicago Flameproof & Wood Specialties Corp. (“Flameproof”). During the policy period, a third party ordered fire-retardant-treated lumber from Flameproof for construction in Minnesota. Flameproof instead sent materials that were not tested, certified, or labeled as compliant. The third party installed the materials, discovered the non-compliance, and then removed the materials. Removing the materials allegedly damaged other portions of the building on the project. The third party then sued Flameproof, alleging costs associated with replacing the lumber as well as property damage to the other materials from the removal of the lumber. Flameproof tendered the claim to Lexington seeking a defense. Lexington filed a declaratory action in the Northern District of Illinois.

Mr. Bassett may be contacted at bbassett@tlsslaw.com



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