Chicago Title Insurance Co. v. St. Paul Mercury Insurance Co., 2011 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 9627

The Court of Appeal affirmed summary judgment for GMSR’s client, St. Paul Mercury Insurance. Chicago Title’s officers and employees were implicated in a mortgage/real estate fraud scheme that resulted in nearly $100 million in settlements and judgments. Chicago Title tendered its defense to its general liability carrier St. Paul. The Court of Appeal held that there was no duty to defend because of an “insurance and related work” exclusion. The Court rejected the argument that the escrows used for the fraudulent transactions were non-insurance work, based among other things on a statute in the Insurance Code that defines “the business of title insurance” as including the conduct of escrows through which title insurance is issued.

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