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Insurer that lost declaratory judgment action over insurance coverage cannot pursue indemnification in subsequent action

A worker was injured on a construction site controlled by the Olver C. Deluca Company.  Deluca demanded that Secura, an insurer for a sub-contractor, defend the worker's injury claim, but it refused.  Deluca then defended the claim on its own and sought reimbursement from Secura.  The Court in that case ruled that Secura owed a duty of defense and required it to re-pay Deluca.  Secura then filed suit against Farm Bureau, Deluca's insurer, seeking reimbursement or indemnification. 

The Court held that while the original case outcome didn't bind Secura because Farm Bureau wasn't a party to that case, Secura's failure to join its claims against Farm Bureau in that original action essentially constituted a "waiver" or an "estoppel" of the right to pursue a subsequent claim.  The Court noted that the issues in both cases arose out of the same "transactions" and that Secura was therefore obligated to join the current claims in the original declaratory judgment action.
Thompson O’Neil, P.C.
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