A recent class-action lawsuit filed by the owner of The Crescent Plaza Hotel against Zurich American Insurance Co. in the Northern District of Illinois illustrates the reappearance of one of the arguments litigated numerous times.Litigation
The Crescent Plaza Hotels suit alleges Zurichs addition of a Communicable Disease Endorsement to its manuscript commercial property policy at renewal implies coverage for COVID-19 losses existed prior to the inclusion of the Communicable Disease Endorsement, according to the case filing.
Interestingly, Zurich had not expressly denied the business interruption claim submitted by the Crescent Plaza Hotel at the time the suit was filed.
The Crescent Plaza Hotel relied on Zurichs denial of other customers business interruption claims and statements made by Zurichs CFO, George Quinn, that “Zurichs business interruption coverage wording typically includes a virus exclusion [and] more than 99% of [Zurichs] contracts in North America will have that wording.”
It contends Zurichs wide-scale denial of business interruption claims combined with Quinns public statements is an effective repudiation of coverage under the policy.