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McGuireWoods insurance lawyers help overturn ‘pro-insurer’ 5th U.S. Circuit Decision

Austin lawyers Mark Lawless and Pam Hopper recently co-authored an amicus curiae brief filed in an important insurance case pending in the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. On June 15, 2012, the 5th Circuit issued a pro-insurer decision in Ewing Construction Co., Inc. v. Amerisure Ins. Co., No. 11-40512, holding that the contractual liability exclusion in a construction contractor's CGL policy eliminates the insurer's duty to defend if the contractor assumes liabilities in a construction contract – in this case, liabilities for alleged faulty construction of tennis courts. Lawless and Hopper joined 10 other Texas policyholder lawyers in filing an amicus curiae brief in support of Ewing's Petitions for Rehearing and En Banc Rehearing. On Aug. 8, 2012, the 5th Circuit withdrew its opinion and certified the issue to the Texas Supreme Court – a potential victory for Texas policyholders.