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MORVANT v. MARYLAND CASUALTY COMPANY et al complaint

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Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 1 of 7
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
MARY MORVANT
* * VERSUS * * MARYLAND CASUALTY COMPANY, * CONTINENTAL INSURANCE * COMPANY, FEDERAL INSURANCE * COMPANY, TRAVELERS CASUALTY * & SURETY COMPANY (F/K/A * AETNA LIFE & CASUALTY * INSURANCE COMPANY), * INSURANCE COMPANY OF NORTH * AMERICA, ABC INSURANCE * COMPANY * * * * * * * *
CIVIL ACTION NO: JUDGE: SECTION: MAGISTRATE: DIVISION:
COMPLAINT Plaintiff, M ary M o rv ant(“M rs .M o rv ant”) , fo r her co m plaintagains tM aryland C as ualty C o m pany, C o ntinental Ins urance C o m pany, Federal Ins urance C o m pany, T rav elers C as ua lty & S urety C o m pany (f/ k/ aA etnaL ife & C as ualty Ins urance C o m pany) , and Ins urance C o m pany o f N o rthA m erica(co llectiv ely, the “D efendants ”) , av ers as fo llo ws : NATURE OF THE ACTION 1. M rs . M o rv ant bringsthisactio n agains t D efendantsto co llect o n a judgm ent
rendered in L o uis iana s tate co urt o n D ecem ber 17 ,2 013agains tA s bes to sC o rpo ratio n L im ited (“A C L ”)in the am o unto f$6, 42 0, 467 , plus co s ts and interes t(the “Judg m ent”) .
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 2 of 7
2 .
T ho s e s tate co urt pro ceedings were entitled “ Mary Morvant v. Asbestos
Corporation Limited, et al., ” and bo re do ck et num ber 2 012 11900, D iv is io n “J, ” in C iv il D is trict C o urtfo r the Paris ho fOrleans , S tate o fL o uis iana(the “s tate co urtlitigatio n”) . 3 . A fter the Judgm ent,A C L failed o r refus ed to pay it,ins tead tak ing a dev o lutiv e
appeal o f the Judgm ent to the L o uis iana Fo urth C ircuit C o urt o f A ppea l.M rs .M o rv ant no w brings this actio n agains tA C L ’s liability ins urers to co llectthe Judgm ent. JURISDICTION AND VENUE 4. 5 . T his C o urthas juris dictio n o v er this cas e purs uantto 2 8U . S. C .s ectio n 13 3 2 . M rs .M o rv ant and D efendants are co m pletely div ers e, as s et fo rth belo w.A nd the
am o untin co ntro v ers y exceeds $7 5 , 000 excludinginteres tand co s ts . 6. V enue is pro per under 2 8U . S. C .§ 13 91becaus e as ubs tantial parto fthe ev ents or
o m is s io ns g iv ingris e to this cas e o ccurred within this dis trict. THE PARTIES 7 . L o uis iana. 8. D efendant M aryland C as ualty C o m pany (“M a ryland C as ualty”) isa fo reign M rs .M o rv antis an adultU . S .citizen do m iciled in the Paris ho fJeffers o n, S tate o f
ins urance co m pany, inco rpo rated in M aryland with itsprincipal place o f bus ines sin M aryland, autho rized to do and/ o r do ingbus ines s in the Paris h o f Orleans , S tate o f L o uis iana, who s e agent fo r s erv ice o f pro ces sisthe L o uis iana S ecretary o f S tate,85 85A rchiv esA v e. ,B ato n R o uge,
2
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 3 of 7
L o uis iana7 0809.M aryla nd C as ualty was the liability ins urer o fA C L beginningo n appro xim ately
1 January 1, 195 7 , and runningthro ughJanuary 1, 197 3 .
9.
D efendant C o ntinental Ins urance C o m pany (“C o ntinental”) is a fo reign
ins urance co m pany inco rpo rated in Penns ylv a nia with its principal place o f bus ines s in Penns ylv ania, autho rized to do and/ o r do ingbus ines s in the Paris ho fOrlea ns , S tate o fL o uis iana, who s e agent fo r s erv ice o f pro ces s is the L o uis ianaS ecretary o f S tate, 85 85 A rchiv es A v e. , B ato n R o uge, L o uis iana 7 0809.C o ntinental ins ured A C L beginning o n appro xim ately Octo ber 1, 197 1
2 and runningthro ughD ecem ber 6, 197 1— and po s s ibly as late as Octo ber1, 197 4.
10.
D efendant Federal Ins urance C o m pany (“Federa l”)afo reign ins urance co m pany
inco rpo rated in Indiana with itsprincipal place o f bus ines sin N ew Jers ey,autho rized to do and/ o r do ing bus ines sin the Paris h o f Orleans ,L o uis iana.Itsagent fo r s erv ice o f pro ces sis L o uis iana S ecretary o f S tate,85 85A rchiv esA v e. ,B ato n R o uge,L o uis iana 7 0809. Federa l
3 ins ured A C L beg inningo n appro xim ately D ecem ber 6, 197 1and runningthro ughJuly 3 1, 197 5 .
11.
D efendant T rav elersC as ualty & S urety C o m pany (f/ k/ a A etna L ife & C as ualty
Ins urance C o m pany)(“T rav elers ”) ,a fo reign ins urance co m pany inco rpo rated in C o nnecticut with its principal place o f bus ines s in C o nnecticut, autho rized to do and/ o r do ingbus ines s in the Paris h o f Orleans ,S tate o f L o uis iana,who s e agent fo r s erv ice o f pro ces sisthe L o uis iana
1 2 3
P o licy num bers include 5 6C 104668, 5 6C 106117 , 5 6C 107 2 94, 5 6C 1085 41, and 5 6C 108801. P o licy num bers include 3 147 45 0. P o licy num bers include 44005 2 3 .
3
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 4 of 7
S ecretary o f S tate, 85 85 A rchiv es A v e. , B ato n R o uge, L o uis iana 7 0809.T rav elers ins ured A C L
4 beginningo n appro xim ately July 3 1, 197 5 and runningthro ughJuly 1, 197 8.
12 .
D efendant Ins urance C o m pany o f N o rth A m erica(“IC N A ”) , afo reign ins urance
co m pany,inco rpo rated in Penns ylv ania with itsprincipal place o f bus ines sin Penns ylv ania , autho rized to do and/ o r do ingbus ines s in the Paris h o f Orleans , S tate o f L o uis iana, who s e agent fo r s erv ice o f pro ces sisthe L o uis iana S ecretary o f S tate,85 85A rchiv esA v e. ,B ato n R o uge, L o uis iana 7 0809. IC N A ins ured A C L beginning o n appro xim ately July 1,197 8 and running
5 thro ughJuly 1, 1981.
13 .
A B C Ins urance C o m pany,and any and all o ther ins urance co m paniesthat s o ld
po licies pro v idingA C L with liability co v erage (exces s o r o therwis e)fo r the liability expres s ed in the Judgm ent. FACTUAL BACKGROUND 14. On D ecem ber 19, 2 012 , M rs .M o rv ant filed the s tate co urt litigatio n agains tA C L
6 T here, in the C iv il D is trict C o urt fo r the Paris h o f Orleans . M rs .M o rv ant alleged that s he wa s
expo s ed to as bes to s , s tartingin 195 3and co ntinuingthro ugh the 1960s and 197 0s .T he expo s ure
4
P o licy num bersinclude 5 1L G 2 692 1 S C A ,5 1L G 2 692 0 S C A ,5 1L G 3 05 13 S C A and 5 1L G 3 17 19 SCA . P o licy num bers include C G L 5 97 1. T hat petitio n is attached as “Exhibit A ” hereto .Its co ntents are expres s ly inco rpo rated into this C o m plaint.
5 6
4
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 5 of 7
caus ed her to dev elo p m alignant m es o thelio m a — an incurable and term inal cancer caus ed by as bes to s inhalatio n.T hatas bes to s was m anufactured, inter alia, by A C L . 15 . A C L had “co m prehens iv e general liability” co v erage in fo rce duringthe relev ant
perio ds withD efendants M aryland C as ualty, C o ntinental, Federal, and IC N A . 16. T he D efendants were activ ely aware o f the s tate co urt litigatio n, and s ent at leas t
o ne atto rney to m o nito r the pro ceedings . 17 . A t tria l,the jury determ ined that: (i)A C L ’sdefectiv ely des igned as bes to sfiber
pro ducts were as ubs tantial co ntributingfacto r and legal caus e o f M rs .M o rv ant’s injury, (ii)its negligent failure to warn o therso f the hazardsas s o ciated with itspro ductswasa legal caus e of M rs .M o rv ant’sinjury a nd (iii)A C L wass trictly liable becaus e itspro ductswere unreas o nably dangero us , per se. Itawarded dam ages o f$6, 42 0, 467 . 18. On D ecem ber 17 , 2 013 , M rs .M o rv ant o btained a final judgm ent agains t A C L in
the s tate co urt litigatio n in the am o unt o f $6, 42 0, 467 ,to gether with co s tsand interes t,to run
7 fro m the date o fjudicial dem and until pa id.
19.
A C L has failed and refus ed to pay the Judgm ent. Ins tead,A C L to o k a
8 B ecaus “dev o lutiv e” appeal to the L o uis ianaFo urth C ircuit C o urt o f A ppeal. e that appeal was
dev o lutiv e (no t s us pens iv e) ,M rs . M o rv ant isentitled to co llect o n the Judgm ent no w fro m A C L ’s liability ins urers — the D efendants .
7
T he Judg m ent isattached hereto as“Exhibit B ”; itsco ntentsare inco rpo rated into this C o m plaint. A C L ’s dev o lutiv e appeal is attached hereto as “ExhibitC . ”
8
5
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 6 of 7
2 0.
A t all tim esduring which M rs .M o rv ant s uffered the injuriesand dam agesthat
fo rm ed the bas is o fthe s tate co urtlitigatio n, the D efendants had in fo rce C o m prehens iv e G eneral
9 T he L iability ins urance po liciespro v iding co v erage fo r the dam agesawarded in the Judgm ent.
“ins uringagreem ents ” o r “co v erage grants ” o f the C o m prehens iv e G eneral L iability ins urance po licies pro v ide, us ua lly within “C o v erage A , ” co v erage fo r dam ages thatthe po licyho lder (e.g., A C L )islegally liable to pay,which dam ages“aris e o ut o f” (o r are “becaus e o f”)“bo dily injury, ” caus ed by an “A ccident” o r “Occurrence. ” 2 1. A C L co m plied with its o bligatio ns under the D efendants ’ liability po licies . M rs .
M o rv ant is abeneficiary o f the liability ins urance po licies s o ld by the D efendants by v irtue o f the
10 D efendantsare directly liable to her under law,including,but no t lim ited to ,the Judgm ent.
pro v is io nso f the L o uis iana R ev is ed S tatutes ,T itle 2 2 ,S ectio n 65 5(no w k no wn asS ectio n
11 12 69) .
2 2 .
Plaintiffhereby dem ands atrial by jury fo r all claim s in the ins tantactio n.
9
Interro gato ry res po ns es by A C L in o ther litigatio n that identify the ins urance po licies in fo rce at the tim es pertinent hereto are attached to this C o m plaint as “Exhibit D . ” T here, A C L identifies the po licy num bers and dates o fco v erage o f“C G L ” po licies is s ued to itby the D efendants . T he s wo rn s tatem ents m ade by A C L in “ExhibitD ” are inco rpo rated into this C o m plaint. See no te 9, supra; L a.R ev .S tat.A nn.§ 2 2 : 2 ; L a.R ev .S tat.§ 65 5 (no w k no wn as L a.R ev .S tat.§ 12 69) . P urs uant to T itle 2 2 , S ectio n 65 5 (no w k no wn as S ectio n 12 69)and the cas e law interpretingit, it isunneces s ary to add the po licyho lder,A C L ,to thisactio n becaus e an executo ry judgm ent has already been o btained agains titand the judg m enthas no tbeen paid.
10
11
6
Case 2:14-cv-00226-LMA-JCW Document 1 Filed 01/30/14 Page 7 of 7
2 3 .
M rs .M o rv ant s eek srelief fro m the D efendantsbas ed o n any and all applicable
theo ries o flaw. WH ER EFOR E, plaintiff M ary M o rv ant req ues ts that the C o urt enter ajudgm ent agains t defendantsM aryland C as ualty,C o ntinental,Federal,T rav elers ,and IC N A in the am o unt o f $6, 42 0, 467 , in solido, to gether with co s ts and lega l interes ta s will hav e accrued fro m the date o f judicial dem and,D ecem ber 19,2 012 ,until the date o f paym ent,and fo r all o ther eq uitable and general reliefto whichM rs .M o rv antis entitled. R es pectfully s ubm itted, B y: / s /H aro ld J.Flanagan
H aro ld J.Flanagan (#2 4091)(T A ) S ean P.B rady (#3 0410) A nders F.H o lm gren (#3 45 97 ) C harles T heo do re Z erner (#3 483 2 ) FL A N A G A N PA R T N ER S L L P 2 01S t.C harles A v enue, S uite 2 405 N ew Orleans , L o uis iana 7 017 0 T elepho ne: (5 04)5 6902 3 5 Facs im ile: (5 04)5 92 02 5 1 and M ick ey P.L andry (#2 2 817 ) Frank J.S warr (#2 3 3 2 2 ) Philip C .H o ffm an (#3 2 2 7 7 ) 1010 C o m m o n S treet, S uite 2 05 0 N ew Orleans , L o uis iana7 0112 T elepho ne: (5 04)2 9912 14 Facs im ile: (5 04)2 9912 15 A tto rneys fo r the Plaintiff, M ary M o rv ant. 7

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date: 
Thu, 2014-01-30
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D.E. 1 COMPLAINT with jury demand against All Defendants .pdf79.49 KB

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