Single Policy Limit Held to Apply to Successive Tenants in Lead-Paint-Tainted Apartment.
In a full-fledged opinion by Justice Smith, the Fourth Department discussed the liability-limits of an insurance carrier for injuries caused to children by lead paint in the insured apartment. The policy, which had a $500,000 limit, included the following sentence: “All bodily injury and property damage resulting from one accidental loss or from continuous or repeated exposure to the same general conditions is considered the result of one accidental loss.” Children in one family who lived in the apartment suffered injury from lead paint and the carrier paid out $350,000. Subsequently children in another family who moved into the same apartment suffered injury from lead paint. The question before the Court was whether the liability to the second family was capped at $150,000 because the total liability of the carrier could not exceed $500,000, or whether the injury to the second family triggered another $500,000 in policy coverage. The Fourth Department determined the carrier was liable for a total of $500,000 for the injuries to both families and the second family could recover no more than $150,000. Nesmith, et al v Allstate Insurance Company, 1252, CA 12-00182 Fourth Dept. 2-1-13