BENTON – A Maine-based insurance company is suing because it believes the claims against a defendant, a former client, aren't coverable under the policy it had with it.
Acadia Insurance Co. filed the suit Jan. 26 in U.S. District Court of the Southern Division of Illinois against Tri-State Water Treatment Inc., Michael Bauer and Stacey Bauer.
According to the complaint, on June 5, the Bauers filed a class-action counterclaim against defendant Tri-State in Madison County Circuit Court, which is referred to as the Bauer Counterclaim. That suit states that Tri-State's marketing tactics for its water purification systems are unfair, unjust and deceptive. It further states that the class will ultimately consist of several thousand members in Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas.
The plaintiff issued a multi-peril commercial lines policy to Tri-State for the period of Sept. 11, 2014, to Sept. 11, 2015. The policy provides commercial general liability coverage, commercial liability umbrella coverage and commercial excess liability coverage, and also includes commercial property damage, commercial auto coverage and commercial inland marine coverage, the suit states.
However, the lawsuit claims, the Bauer Counterclaim does not seek damages that would activate coverage under those portions of the policy and are not germane to this complaint for declaratory judgment. One of the damages it seeks, for example, is for “personal and advertising injury," the suit states.
The plaintiff seeks from the court a determination of the rights and liabilities with respect to the policy; that the Bauer Counterclaim does not allege an injury sufficient to trigger coverage, in addition to the other claims in the lawsuit; find and declare that the plaintiff has no duty under the policy to defendant Tri-State against the Bauer Counterclaim; and grant the plaintiff other relief the court deems proper.
The plaintiff is represented by Kent J. Cummings and Dana A. Rice of Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP of Chicago.
U.S. District Court of the Southern Division of Illinois case number 16-cv-94