ILNews

Simon sues insurance companies over fatal escalator accident

Scott Olson
June 27, 2014
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Simon Property Group Inc. has filed suit against two insurance companies in an attempt to recoup damages relating to an escalator accident at Circle Centre mall in 2009 that led to the death of a Texas FFA delegate.

Simon, along with its Circle Centre Mall LLC entity, is suing Schaumburg, Ill.-based Zurich American Insurance Co. and Greensburg, Pa.-based Old Republic Insurance Co. in Marion Superior Court for unspecified damages.

The two firms insured escalator servicer Schindler Elevator Corp. at the time of the fall in October 2009. Police reports at the time said Philip Caler, a Texas FFA delegate in Indianapolis for the agricultural organization’s national convention, suffered critical injuries when he fell about 40 feet from an escalator near the third floor of the mall.

Caler, 20, died in September 2013 from his injuries, which included damage to his spine and brain.

In 2011, Caler’s parents filed suit against Simon, the mall, and the escalator company, among others, seeking damages due to their negligence, according to Simon’s complaint against the insurance companies.

Simon and Circle Centre settled the suit in July 2013 with help from their insurance company, XL Insurance America Inc. But Simon and Circle Centre claim in their complaint against Zurich and Old Republic that the two insurance companies failed to follow through on promises that they also would provide coverage to help with losses.

“As a result, Circle Center and Simon have been forced to institute this action to recover what should have been routine payments under the applicable policies,” their lawyer, Gregory A. Neibarger of Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP, wrote in the complaint.

Reached by phone, Neibarger declined to comment further. Representatives of Zurich and Old Republic did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Indianapolis Business Journal on Friday.

Simon and Circle Centre are suing for breach of contract and bad faith.
 

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  1. For many years this young man was "family" being my cousin's son. Then he decided to ignore my existence and that of my daughter who was very hurt by his actions after growing up admiring, Jason. Glad he is doing well, as for his opinion, if you care so much you wouldn't ignore the feelings of those who cared so much about you for years, Jason.

  2. Good riddance to this dangerous activist judge

  3. What is the one thing the Hoosier legal status quo hates more than a whistleblower? A lawyer whistleblower taking on the system man to man. That must never be rewarded, must always, always, always be punished, lest the whole rotten tree be felled.

  4. I want to post this to keep this tread alive and hope more of David's former clients might come forward. In my case, this coward of a man represented me from June 2014 for a couple of months before I fired him. I knew something was wrong when he blatantly lied about what he had advised me in my contentious and unfortunate divorce trial. His impact on the proceedings cast a very long shadow and continues to impact me after a lengthy 19 month divorce. I would join a class action suit.

  5. The dispute in LB Indiana regarding lake front property rights is typical of most beach communities along our Great Lakes. Simply put, communication to non owners when visiting the lakefront would be beneficial. The Great Lakes are designated navigational waters (including shorelines). The high-water mark signifies the area one is able to navigate. This means you can walk, run, skip, etc. along the shores. You can't however loiter, camp, sunbath in front of someones property. Informational signs may be helpful to owners and visitors. Our Great Lakes are a treasure that should be enjoyed by all. PS We should all be concerned that the Long Beach, Indiana community is on septic systems.

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