Home Insurer Has A Duty To Defend Road Rage Claim

 Thursday, August 13, 2020

 Canadian Underwriter

Pembridge Insurance Company of Canada has a duty to defend an insured who has liability coverage under a home insurance policy in a case in which the insured got out of his car and allegedly threatened another driver in a road rage incident.

By rejecting an appeal from the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court of Canada recently confirmed that Pembridge must defend the insured driver in the auto bodily injury case, even though the home insurance policy contains an exclusion for claims arising from “the ownership, use or operation of any motorized vehicle.”

Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company, the driver’s auto insurer, won an appeal in 2019 against Pembridge at the Ontario Appeal Court level.

The appellate court overturned the decision of a motions judge, who initially found that Pembridge did not have a duty to defend the driver, in light of the exclusion in the homeowner’s policy.

The Supreme Court of Canada recently refused to hear Pembridge’s appeal, meaning the home insurer, Pembridge, now has to defend the auto liability case along with the auto insurer, Dominion.