The Eastern District of Pennsylvania Rules in Favor of Insurer for Injuries Sustained by an Employee of a Subcontractor

In this Declaratory Judgment Action, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania granted the Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings filed by Wright & O’Donnell, P.C. on behalf of an Insurer. The general contractor, who was an Additional Insured on the applicable policy, sought coverage relating to an underlying Pennsylvania state court suit filed by an employee of a subcontractor who was allegedly hurt on a construction site. The Named Insured on the policy at issue was a different subcontractor retained by the general contractor. The Named Insured did not hire or contract with the employer of the injured worker. The District Court agreed with Insurer’s position that the policy’s exclusion for personal injuries sustained by the employees of the insured’s contractors or subcontractors precludes coverage for the loss. The Court held that the language of the exclusion expanded its application to any employees or workers of any subcontractors hired by any insured, and not solely the Named Insured. Therefore, the District Court found there was no coverage under the insurance policy to the Additional Insured general contractor and that there was no duty to defend or indemnify the Additional Insured for the underlying claim.

The Court’s opinion can be found at Great Lakes Ins. SE v. Wagner Dev. Co., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 183988.