The insurer was unsuccessful in moving for summary judgment on the insured’s claim for loss of business income and civil authority coverage due to losses caused by two hurricanes. Townsley v. Ohio Security Ins. Co., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 202698 (W.D. La. Oct. 20, 2021).
Hurricane Laura struck southeast Louisiana on August 27, 2020 and Hurricane Delta made landfall in the same area on October 9, 2020. Both hurricanes caused property damage and an interruption of business for the insured law firm. Power outages and mandatory evacuation orders caused by both storms created a loss of income for the law firm. Ohio Security denied coverage under the business income, extra expense, and civil authority provisions.
The law firm sued and Ohio Security moved for summary judgment. From the undisputed facts, the court could not determine the law firm’s entitlement to business income and extra expense coverage, so the motion was denied for these claims.
The law firm argued that the mandatory evacuation orders for both storms meant it was entitled to coverage under Civil Authority provisions. The coverage began 72 hours after the Civil Authority action was imposed. The law firm was entitled to Civil Authority Coverage for Hurricane Laura because the August 27, 2020 order was extended until September 11, 2020. The orders for Hurricane Delta, however, did not meet the 72 hour requirement because there was no extension issued.