Read your insurance policy. That's the bottom line advice
for businesses of all kinds, especially when it comes to pollution
exclusions in property damage and liability insurance policies.
A used car company and its principal learned this the hard
Mississauga Motor Mart, and its directing mind, unsuccessfully
sued its insurer for coverage and defence, after the Motor
Mart's former landlord sued them for waste oil damage.
The former landlord's statement of claim alleges that a
spill of waste oil occurred at the leased premises, causing
significant damage to the property, resulting in clean up costs,
repair costs and losses due to delay in re-leasing the premises
upon the expiry of the MMM lease, while the repairs were effected.
The spill and the damage to the landlord's property are alleged
to have been occasioned by the defendants' "breach of
contract and/or negligence" as particularized in the statement
The pollution exclusion
The policy says:
"This insurance does not apply
(1) ... "property
damage" ... arising out of the actual, ... spill, ... release
or escape of "pollutants":
a. At or from any premises,
site or location which is or was at any time ... occupied by any
insured, or rented or loaned to any insured. ...
b. At or from any
premises, site or location which is or was at any time used by or
for any insured ... for the handling, storage, disposal, processing
or treatment of waste"
The term "property damage" is defined to mean:
Physical injury to tangible property, including all
resulting loss of use of that property;
According to the court,
Once again, taking into account the contemplation of
the parties at the time the policy was concluded, in my view the
only reasonable interpretation is that the insurer did not intend
to obligate itself to indemnify the insured in relation to any
liabilities for "compensatory damages" arising out of the
spill of a "pollutant", regardless whether those damages
were payable on account of actual injury or economic loss. All of
the damages claimed by the landlord in the Action flow from
"property damage" caused by the spill. In my view, all of
the damage claims in the Action properly fall within the pollution
exclusion in the policy.
Automobile drivers, like fine wine, tend to get better with age. Older drivers can draw on a wealth of experience from their years on the road to assist them when faced by a variety of dangerous conditions.
Under B.C.'s former and current Limitation Act, the limitation period for a Plaintiff's claim can be extended on the basis of a Defendant having acknowledged in writing some liability for the cause of action.
The insurance industry will be interested in Ledcor Construction Ltd v. Northbridge Indemnity Insurance Co because of principles the Supreme Court of Canada applied to the "faulty workmanship" exclusion in a Builders' Risk policy.
The recent Preliminary Issue decision in Walsh and Echelon (FSCO A15-007448, August 31, 2016) confirms that an economic loss does not need to be demonstrated in order to be entitled to attendant care benefits.
For the first time in BC, a Court has decided that an insured is entitled to special costs, rather than the lower tariff costs, solely because they were successful in a coverage action against their insurer.
Policyholders recently won a key victory at the Supreme Court of Canada in Ledcor Construction Ltd. v. Northbridge Indemnity Insurance Co. as the Supreme Court clarified the interpretation of a standard form...
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