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Pre-Answer Motion to Dismiss Ends Coverage Dispute

Case Study

Pre-Answer Motion to Dismiss Ends Coverage Dispute

Goldberg Segalla’s Jeffrey L. Kinglsey, chair of the firm’s Global Insurance Services Practice Group, and Adam R. Durst, an associate with the GIS New York team, succeeded on a C.P.L.R. §3211 pre-answer motion to dismiss, removing a major property and liability insurer from a coverage dispute with its insured, a landscaping company.

In the underlying action, two clients of the insured landscaper alleged the insured’s work “was not performed in a good and workmanlike manner,” that it had used improper materials, and that it had failed to follow manufacturers’ instructions, leading to damage and deterioration of some of the work that the landscaper performed. The clients in the underlying matter sought reimbursement of the fees they paid for the services, plus interest, amounting to approximately $70,000.

Our client investigated and issued a denial of coverage on the grounds that the insured’s general liability policy did not cover its own faulty workmanship or breach of contract. The insured sought declaratory judgment to secure coverage.

The court agreed that the insured sought to create coverage where none existed, and granted our client’s early and aggressive motion to dismiss.