Jury Finds Broker Liable for Policyholder’s Insufficient Business Interruption Limits

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Policyholders have a right to rely on the purported expertise offered by insurance professionals.

January 6, 2020
Michael S. Levine & Michelle M. Spatz - Hunton Insurance Recovery Blog

After a four-day trial, an Arizona federal jury found that Western Truck Insurance Services, Inc., an insurance broker, was negligent in selling Madison Alley Transportation and Logistics Inc. a business interruption policy with inadequate annual limits. Based on its finding of negligence, the jury determined that the broker was liable for $685,000 of $1,000,000 in damages suffered by Madison Alley as a result of a flood in its warehouse. The verdict and Complaint, filed in Arizona state court before the case was removed, can be found here and here.

In June 2016, a subtenant in Madison Alley’s warehouse broke a sprinkler line while operating a forklift, causing the warehouse to flood. The warehouse was used to store and deliver retail display goods, and Madison Alley was unable to do business during the five months of repairs.
Madison Alley sought coverage under a business interruption policy it had purchased through Western Truck, but the policy’s $20,000 limit was not enough to cover its approximately $1,480,000 in losses.

Madison Alley sought coverage under a business interruption policy it had purchased through Western Truck, but the policy’s $20,000 limit was not enough to cover its approximately $1,480,000 in losses.

Reprinted courtesy of Michael S. Levine, Hunton Andrews Kurth and Michelle M. Spatz, Hunton Andrews Kurth
Mr. Levine may be contacted at mlevine@HuntonAK.com
Ms. Spatz may be contacted at mspatz@HuntonAK.com



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