Summary Judgment Granted to Insurance Broker in Errors and Omissions Case

April 17, 2012

London Fischer, LLP attorneys James Walsh and Jeff Miragliotta recently obtained summary judgment on behalf of Frank Crystal & Co. in a broker’s errors and omissions case pending in Supreme Court, Westchester County. Mark Mariani, Inc., a general contractor, retained Frank Crystal to procure general liability insurance. Unbeknownst to Crystal, the contractor’s work force included both employees and workers paid as independent contractors. When one of the independent contractors was injured and sued the general contractor, the insurer denied coverage for the claim, relying on a policy exclusion. The contractor brought a third party action against Crystal, alleging negligent insurance procurement. Through discovery, Mr. Walsh and Mr. Miragliotta established that the general contractor never advised Crystal that it had a substantial independent contractor workforce and had submitted applications yearly confirming that the general contractor secured signed indemnity and insurance procurement obligations from all contractors. The Court adopted the arguments advanced in the London Fischer’s summary judgment motion, holding that Crystal properly procured all of the insurance requested by the general contractor and that Plaintiff’s status as an employee or an independent contractor was irrelevant.