Court Finds That Insurer Has a Duty to Defend Under Claims-Made Pollution Liability Policy

N. Yamhill Station, LLC. v. Great American Alliance Ins. Co.

(District Court, Oregon, May 21, 2009)


Effective October 6, 2006, plaintiffs’ gas station was covered by a pollution liability policy.  In November 2006, a leak in a gasoline storage tank was discovered.  The insurer denied coverage because the leak commenced before the inception date of the policy.  However, the court disagreed, holding that the underlying complaint could be reasonably interpreted as alleging that an environmental incident occurred after the inception date

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Carbon Monoxide Discharged from Furnance is “Pollutant” Released into Atmosphere

Nautilus Insurance Company v. Country Oaks Apartments, Ltd.  (Click on the Case Name for full decision)

(5th Cir. ( Texas), April 22, 2009

The vent to a furnance was accidently blocked, causing the carbon monoxide that would otherwise have been discharged into the atmosphere to be dispersed into an apartment.  The carbon monoxide consistuted a “pollutant” within the meaning of the absolute pollution exclusion and its discharge from the furnance constituted discharge into the “atmosphere."


By Daniel W. Gerber and Jeffrey

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