June 18, 2019

June 18, 2019

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June 17, 2019

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Court Declines to Reconsider Summary Judgment Decision in Latest Development in Ongoing Asbestos Liability Reinsurance Litigation

The Northern District of New York declined to reconsider a September 2018 decision on competing motions for partial summary judgment we previously reported on in a long-running reinsurance dispute related to asbestos liability exposure. Subsequent to the court’s decision, Century Indemnity Co. moved for reconsideration of the court’s denial of summary judgment on its collateral estoppel defense and denial of its motion to dismiss for lack of standing because the court allegedly overlooked “controlling” evidence and decisions on these issues.

First, on the collateral estoppel claim, the court rejected Century’s argument that the court’s September decision improperly relied on a similar decision in a case involving Utica because that decision was issued after the summary judgment briefing was complete and the court cited the decision “without the benefit of briefing” on the decision’s impact. The court explained the September decision merely recognized the similar decision as involving a “similar estoppel argument” and did not improperly “adopt” the decision’s conclusions or impute a controlling effect to the decision.

Second, on standing, the court disagreed with Century’s contention that the September decision relieved Utica of its burden to establish standing. Harkening back to its September decision, the court emphasized Utica submitted evidence “tending to establish” standing and Century failed to “conclusively undermine” that showing.

Thus, the court denied the motion for reconsideration.

Utica Mutual Ins. Co. v. Century Indemnity Co., Case No. 13-995 (USDC N.D.N.Y. Nov. 30, 2018).

©2011-2019 Carlton Fields, P.A.


About this Author

Thaddeus H. Ewald, Carlton Fields, Litigation lawyer

Thaddeus Ewald's practice focuses on class actions and complex civil litigation in the insurance and financial services industries.

Thaddeus completed a dual-degree program at Georgetown University, graduating in December 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in government and in August 2013 with a master’s degree in American government.

While in law school, Thaddeus served as senior executive editor of The George Washington Law Review. Additionally, he worked as a legal intern with the U.S. Department of Justice in the Fraud Section of the Criminal...