NJ Court Skeptical Of Contamination Pitch In Virus Suit

By Bill Wichert (September 24, 2021, 8:08 PM EDT) -- A New Jersey state judge on Friday challenged Highgate Hotels LP's stance that purported contamination from COVID-19 at its properties across the country constituted physical damage and thus warranted coverage from a Liberty Mutual unit and other insurers, noting that the airborne virus has damaged the entire world.

During a phone hearing on the insurers' motions to dismiss the Texas-based hospitality company's suit seeking coronavirus pandemic-related coverage under a $600 million insurance program, Superior Court Judge Robert C. Wilson appeared skeptical that such contamination represented "'direct physical loss or damage to property'" under the policies.

The judge pushed back after Highgate...

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