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Steven Dyki Wins Reversal On Appeal In Fourth Department

On April 28, 2017, Steven Dyki won a reversal in the Appellate Division, Fourth Department of the trial court’s decision that denied our client’s motion for summary judgment in Landsman Development Corp. v. RLI Insurance Company, 2017 NY Slip OP 03294 (4th Dep’t 2017). The plaintiff, Landsman Development Company, commenced an action against RLI Insurance Company for insurance coverage. RLI commenced a third-party action against our client, Technology Insurance Company, and Landsman subsequently commenced a direct action for a declaration that Technology was obligated to defend and indemnify Landsman in an underlying personal injury case brought by Gary Militello against Landsman. Mr. Dyki argued in the Court below that there was no written contract between Landsman and Technology’s insured, Landsman Building Services Group, in effect at the time of the accident; therefore the additional insured endorsement was not triggered and no coverage was owed. The trial court originally granted summary judgment dismissing the case against Technology, but on a later motion to reargue, changed its decision finding an issue of fact as to whether the endorsement was triggered. On appeal, the Fourth Department reversed and dismissed all claims against Technology. The Fourth Department agreed with Mr. Dyki and held that there was no written contract, and the contract executed almost four years after the accident that “memorialized” a pre-accident mutual understanding was not sufficient to constitute a written contract in effect at the time of the accident to bind coverage.

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