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More “Additional Insured” heartache

We’ve chronicled here, here, and here some of the ways in which an “Additional Insured” can be disappointed.  The most recent is from Pennsylvania, where the United States District Court Judge agreed with the Magistrate that the Additional Insured — Dick’s Sporting Goods — was required to find a court in the People’s Republic of China if it wished to pursue its claim.

Dick’s sold a piece of exercise equipment — a “stability ball.”  The customer got hurt and sued Dick’s.  Fortunately, Dick’s had had the foresight to require the vendor of the ball to (a) carry liability insurance; and (b) have Dick’s named as an Additional Insured.  The vendor did carry the required insurance, and it did name Dick’s as an Additional Insured.

But instead of a defense in the underlying suit, what Dick’s Additional Insured status did for Dick’s was give Dick’s the right to go to China to litigate, because the policy under which Dick’s was an Additional Insured was issued by the China-domiciled PICC Prop. & Cas. Co. Ltd. And that policy specified that any suit against PICC must be brought in the People’s Republic of China.

The case is Dick’s Sporting Goods, Inc. v. PICC Prop. & Cas. Co. Ltd. Suzhou Branch, No. 2:16-cv-01635-DSC-RCM (W.D. Pa. August 31, 2017).

To the old lessons — specify precisely what Additional Insured endorsement you want; demand a copy of the Policy (not merely a COI); and read the Policy when you get it — it appears we now must add “Specify where the insurance company is suable!

Robert ("Bob") M. Frey

certificate of insurance