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Asbestos Insurers’ Pre-emptive Strike Strikes Out

Posted May 10, 2007 8:06 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A Manhattan judge has refused to limit liability for two asbestos insurers in an unusual pre-emptive class action suit.

Continental Casualty Coverage and American Casualty Co. had sought a declaratory judgment that they owed no more than the $8.7 million already paid under liability policies. The judge refused, saying the companies could be liable for more than $250 million, according to the New York Law Journal.

The policy holder, the Keasbey Co., is a defunct company that had installed and removed insulation. After asbestos plaintiffs sued Keasbey, the insurers sued the plaintiffs, arguing their claims were precluded by equitable doctrines and policy limits precluded further liability.

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