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MetLife Solely Responsible For Asbestos-Related Claims.

Connecticut's highest court ruled that Travelers Casualty & Surety Co. and other insurers are not obligated to help pay asbestos-related claims against Metropolitan Life Insurance Co.

The state Supreme Court rejected a MetLife appeal of a lower court decision that ruled MetLife's insurers are not liable for payments of about 200,000 asbestos-related claims against the NewYork-based MetLife.

The legal question for MetLife in the case was whether the separate claims involving asbestos constituted a single occurrence or multiple occurrences. If, as MetLife claimed, the cases constituted a single occurrence, MetLife's insurers would be liable to cover damages beyond a threshold of $25 million. If the claims are defined as multiple occurrences, the threshold would apply to each claim separately.

MetLife argued that all the asbestos-related claims against it constituted a single occurrence because all the cases resulted from MetLife's "failure to warn" its policyholders of the dangers of asbestos exposure. The Supreme Court rejected this argument, noting that the asbestos claims originated from more than one work site and from exposures over a period of 60 years, both of which invalidate the "single occurrence" guideline.
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Comment:MetLife Solely Responsible For Asbestos-Related Claims.
Publication:Best's Review
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2001
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