Insurer’s “Unfair Competition” Exclusion Defense to Product Liability Suit Overcooked, For Now, As Pressure Cooker Manufacturer’s Insurance Claim Proceeds

August 23, 2021
Geoffrey B. Fehling - Hunton Insurance Recovery Blog

A California federal district court recently denied an insurer’s motion to dismiss a manufacturer’s insurance coverage suit on the grounds that an “unfair competition” exclusion barred coverage for a suit that alleged violations of the Colorado Consumer Protection Act. The court allowed the suit to proceed because the exclusion did not clearly, explicitly, and unambiguously apply to the product liability suit alleged against the manufacturer. The decision in Arovast Corporation v. Great American E&S Insurance Co., No. SACV 21-596-CJC (C.D. Cal. Aug. 2, 2021) highlights the broad range of activities that can be found in “unfair competition,” “antitrust,” and similar exclusions and how they can be cited as grounds to deny coverage in a variety of contexts beyond the anti-competitive claims those labels may suggest to most policyholders.

Mr. Fehling may be contacted at gfehling@HuntonAK.com



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