Despite 'named storm' coverage for Skanska unit, Harvey flooding not included – Reuters

February 4, 2022 By admin

Welcome to Reuters Legal News beta. Please enjoy and provide us with your feedback as we continue to improve the Reuters Legal News experience.
Interstate highway 45 is submerged from the effects of Hurricane Harvey seen during widespread flooding in Houston, Texas, U.S. August 27, 2017. REUTERS/Richard Carson
The company and law firm names shown above are generated automatically based on the text of the article. We are improving this feature as we continue to test and develop in beta. We welcome feedback, which you can provide using the feedback tab on the right of the page.
(Reuters) – Landmark American Insurance Co does not owe a Skanska USA unit $1.5 million for flooding damage from Hurricane Harvey because the policy it issued covered only wind and hail damage, a federal appeals court held Thursday.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower-court judge’s ruling for SCD Memorial Place II, owner of a Skanska-developed office building in Houston that was flooded when the nearby Buffalo Bayou overflowed during the August 2017 storm.
Attorneys for Landmark and SCD did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Thursday.
According to the 5th Circuit, SCD has already recovered “millions of dollars” under its primary, all-risk policy from Lexington Insurance, which included flooding in its definition of windstorm damage.
However, Lexington’s policy had a very high deductible, so SCD also purchased a “deductible buy-back” policy from Landmark.
Landmark’s policy promised reimbursement for up to $1.5 million in deductibles for damage from two “Perils Covered: Windstorm or Hail associated with a Named Storm.”
Since Landmark’s policy did not define “Windstorm,” SCD argued that it should borrow the expansive definition from Lexington's policy. The district court judge in Houston agreed.
Reversing, the 5th Circuit said Lexington’s definition made no sense for Landmark’s named-risk policy, which “sets up ‘Windstorm’ and ‘Hail’ as specific perils.”
Since SCD had not claimed any wind or hail damage, “the Landmark policy does not apply to the type of damage that the SCD property sustained in connection with Hurricane Harvey,” the panel concluded.
The case is Landmark American Insurance Co. v. SCD Memorial Place II LLC, 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals No. 20-20389.
For Landmark: Jay Brown and Hilary Channing Borow of Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton
For SCD Memorial Place II: Mark Miller and Tae Andrews of Miller Friel
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Subscribe for our daily curated newsletter to receive the latest Reuters legal news and headlines delivered to your inbox.
Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest multimedia news provider, reaching billions of people worldwide every day. Reuters provides business, financial, national and international news to professionals via desktop terminals, the world's media organizations, industry events and directly to consumers.
Build the strongest argument relying on authoritative content, attorney-editor expertise, and industry defining technology.
The most comprehensive solution to manage all your complex and ever-expanding tax and compliance needs.
The industry leader for online information for tax, accounting and finance professionals.
Access unmatched financial data, news and content in a highly-customised workflow experience on desktop, web and mobile.
Browse an unrivalled portfolio of real-time and historical market data and insights from worldwide sources and experts.
Screen for heightened risk individual and entities globally to help uncover hidden risks in business relationships and human networks.
All quotes delayed a minimum of 15 minutes. See here for a complete list of exchanges and delays.
© 2022 Reuters. All rights reserved