Archive for June 2011

Chambers and Partners ranks Laurie & Brennan, LLP in Band 2!

June 15, 2011

In only its second year of business, Laurie & Brennan, LLP has earned the highly regarded ranking of Band 2 for Illinois law firms in the area of Construction Law, ahead of many other established firms.  Chambers describes Laurie & Brennan as a “go-to firm in the Illinois market…providing a breadth of legal services across all aspects of construction projects, at a local and international level.”  Ty Laurie and Dan Brennan, founding partners, have been consistently ranked as lawyers in Band 1 and Band 2, respectively.  Chambers notes that the “pair draw praise from an array of loyal clients thanks to their tremendous credentials and ‘pragmatic and solution-oriented approach.’”

To view all the rankings please visit http://www.chambersandpartners.com/USA/Editorial/42945.

About Chambers and Partners: Chambers & Partners publish the leading guides to the legal profession. They have a team of 100 highly qualified full-time researchers who identify and rank the world`s best lawyers and law firms based on in-depth, objective research. Chambers identifies and ranks the world`s best lawyers and law firms.  Their team conducts thousands of interviews with lawyers and their clients worldwide. They select their sources on the basis of: submissions put forward by legal practices, interviews during the course of research, and their own database resources. 

This Blog is made available by Laurie & Brennan, LLP for general educational purposes only. The purpose of the Blog is not to provide specific legal advice on any particular matter. By using this Blog site you understand that there is no attorney client relationship between you and this firm and the authors or members of the firm. This Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state. Under rules applicable to the professional conduct of attorneys in various jurisdictions, the material on this Blog may be considered advertising material.

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Warehouse Labeling Mistake Ruled a Covered “Occurrence” Under Commercial General Liability Policy, Triggers Duty to Defend

June 13, 2011

The Illinois Appellate Court, First District, recently held that a commercial general liability insurer had a duty to defend its insured because an underlying negligence action alleged conduct that constituted an “accident” and, thus, an “occurrence” under the policy. United Nat’l Ins. Co. v. Faure Bros., No. 1-10-2214 (Ill. App. Ct. May 17, 2011).

In United Nat’l, plaintiff, United National Insurance Company (“United National”), issued a commercial general liability insurance policy to defendant, Faure Brothers Corporation (“Faure Brothers”). Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (“Air Products”), filed suit against one of Faure Brothers’ divisions, Gateway Warehouse Company, Inc. (“Gateway”), which warehouses, re-labels and ships chemical products for its customers. In its lawsuit, Air Products alleged Gateway negligently mislabeled its products, in turn causing Air Products to ship improper chemical products to some of its customers and suffer damages. Faure Brothers demanded that United National defend the negligence lawsuit, but United National refused. Both Gateway and United National filed declaratory judgment actions and motions for summary judgment. The circuit court held that United National had no duty to defend the lawsuit, finding that Air Products’ complaint did not allege an “occurrence” as defined by the policy.

On appeal, the appellate court noted that the applicable policy provisions covered “property damage” caused by an “occurrence”, and that “occurrence” was defined as an “accident”. As the policy did not define “accident”, the court relied on the Illinois Supreme Court’s definition of “accident” in insurance cases. It stated that “determination of whether an occurrence is an accident is focused on ‘whether the injury is expected or intended by the insured, not whether the acts were performed intentionally.’” Id. (internal citation omitted). Here, the court reasoned that Faure Brothers unexpectedly mislabeled the chemicals, and thus the result was an “accident”.

Accordingly, in construing the underlying complaint liberally in favor of the insured, the appellate court held that Air Products’ allegations fell within, or potentially within, the policy’s coverage. Therefore, the court reversed the circuit court’s judgment order and found that United National had a duty to defend Faure Brothers in the underlying action.

This Blog is made available by Laurie & Brennan, LLP for general educational purposes only. The purpose of the Blog is not to provide specific legal advice on any particular matter. By using this Blog site you understand that there is no attorney client relationship between you and this firm and the authors or members of the firm. This Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state. Under rules applicable to the professional conduct of attorneys in various jurisdictions, the material on this Blog may be considered advertising material.