Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Fourth Circuit holds that inmate suicides were 'accidents' and thus 'occurrences' under insurance policy

Columbia Casualty v. Westfield Insurance dealt with two inmate suicides at a county jail in West Virginia and whether the incidents should have been covered by the county's liability insurance. The Fourth Circuit certified a question to the West Virginia Supreme Court asking whether state law would find the suicidal deaths to be considered "occurrences" under Westfield's liability policy. The question was answered in the affirmative and adopted by the Fourth Circuit.

A news report on the suicides and case can be found here.

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