Christine A. Viney, Bruce Mellett and Patrick Schembri write about the Alberta Court of Appeal's summary of the key principles that apply when an insured seeks a declaration that an insurer’s duty to defend has been triggered before liability in the underlying action has been determined in the Lawyer's Daily.
They write, "The court repeatedly emphasizes the need to avoid premature findings of fact that could affect liability in the underlying action" and "finds the lower court’s interpretation of the policy reviewable on a deferential standard, on the basis that the policy under consideration was not a standard form contract."
"In reviewing the key principles applicable to summary proceedings in which an insured seeks confirmation that its insurer is obliged to defend a claim, the Alberta Court of Appeal emphasizes the limited role of factual findings, particularly when those findings may be relevant to liability in the underlying action."
In Optrics Inc. v Lloyd’s Underwriters 2022 ABCA 26, "this led the Court of Appeal to adopt a more expansive view of the potential meaning of the contract between the parties and to reject the lower court’s interpretation of that contract as premature."
Read the full article on the Lawyer's Daily website.