Appellate Court Affirms Summary Judgment – Condo Association Does Not Have Standing To Recover For Unit Owners’ Personal Property

Attorney David Osborne won an appeal affirming summary judgment that Westfield did not owe a duty to defend or indemnify a condominium developer against a construction defect lawsuit, notwithstanding allegations of damage to the unit owners’ personal property. 

The 933 Van Buren Condo Association filed a construction defect lawsuit and alleged that the Developer was responsible for water infiltration to the building that resulted in damage to common elements and the unit owners’ personal property.  The Developer tendered its defense to Westfield as an additional insured on a CGL policy Westfield issued to its named insured, the roofing subcontractor.  Westfield denied the Developer’s tender and filed a complaint for declaratory judgment. 

The trial court granted summary judgment in Westfield’s favor and the Appellate Court affirmed, holding that: (1) the claimed damages did not result from an accident because they were merely the non-fortuitous result of shoddy workmanship; (2) the repair and replacement of the defective roof did not constitute “property damage;” and (3) although the underlying complaint referenced damages to unit owner’s personal property, The 933 Van Buren Condo Association neither had standing nor actually sought to recover those damages.  As such, there was no potential for coverage and Westfield did not owe a duty to defend.

To see full opinion click link: Westfield Ins. Co. v. West Van Buren, LLC, 2016 WL 2586783