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Insurer doesn’t have to cover cleanup of California sites

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Relying on California law and a case from 2006, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that an insurer of former film-processing sites has no obligation to indemnify Thomson Inc. for the remediations of three California locations.

Thomson acquired the assets of Technicolor Inc., which included three contaminated former film-processing sites in Hollywood, North Hollywood and West Drayton, Calif. Local environmental authorities ordered Thomson to cleanup the sites. Remediation has already cost more than $6.5 million for the sites.

Thomson sought indemnification from Continental, which insured Technicolor from 1969 to 1974. It claims the umbrella policy from Continental covers losses from orders from administrative agencies; Continental claimed the policy is limited to losses resulting from courtroom litigation.

Marion Superior Judge Michael Keele agreed with Continental’s argument, which the Court of Appeals upheld. Relying on California insurance law and CDM Investors v. Travelers Cas. & Sur. Co., 139 Cal. Rptr. 3d 669, 674 (Cal. Ct. App. 2006), the judges found that the policy’s definition of “ultimate net loss” does not expand the general definition of “damages” so that administrative orders are covered.

“Following the California Court of Appeal’s decision in CDM Investors, we conclude that the Umbrella Policy limits Continental’s indemnity obligations to ‘damages.’ Consequently, Continental has no obligation to indemnify Thomson for the remediations of the Hollywood, North Hollywood, and West Drayton sites as a matter of law,” Judge Cale Bradford wrote in Thomson, Inc., n/k/a Technicolor USA, Inc., Technicolor, Inc., and Technicolor Limited v. Continental Casualty Co.; Travelers Casualty & Surety Co. & Travelers Property Casualty Co. of Am., et al., 49A05-1201-PL-24. 

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  1. Major social engineering imposed by judicial order well in advance of democratic change, has been the story of the whole post ww2 period. Contraception, desegregation, abortion, gay marriage: all rammed down the throats of Americans who didn't vote to change existing laws on any such thing, by the unelected lifetime tenure Supreme court heirarchs. Maybe people came to accept those things once imposed upon them, but, that's accommodation not acceptance; and surely not democracy. So let's quit lying to the kids telling them this is a democracy. Some sort of oligarchy, but no democracy that's for sure, and it never was. A bourgeois republic from day one.

  2. JD Massur, yes, brings to mind a similar stand at a Texas Mission in 1836. Or Vladivostok in 1918. As you seemingly gloat, to the victors go the spoils ... let the looting begin, right?

  3. I always wondered why high fence deer hunting was frowned upon? I guess you need to keep the population steady. If you don't, no one can enjoy hunting! Thanks for the post! Fence

  4. Whether you support "gay marriage" or not is not the issue. The issue is whether the SCOTUS can extract from an unmentionable somewhere the notion that the Constitution forbids government "interference" in the "right" to marry. Just imagine time-traveling to Philadelphia in 1787. Ask James Madison if the document he and his fellows just wrote allowed him- or forbade government to "interfere" with- his "right" to marry George Washington? He would have immediately- and justly- summoned the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw your sorry self out into the street. Far from being a day of liberation, this is a day of capitulation by the Rule of Law to the Rule of What's Happening Now.

  5. With today's ruling, AG Zoeller's arguments in the cases of Obamacare and Same-sex Marriage can be relegated to the ash heap of history. 0-fer

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