Tuesday, March 5, 2013

In Re: Deepwater Horizon

Mar 1: In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit, Case No. 12-30230 and 12-30230. Appealed from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.
    The Appeals Court explains that, "This appeal presents only one of the many disputes that have arisen and will arise from the explosion and sinking of Transocean's Deepwater Horizon in April 2010. Today we address the obligations of Transocean's primary and excess-liability insurers to cover BP's pollution-related liabilities deriving from the ensuing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Applying Texas law, especially as clarified since the district court's decision, we find that the umbrella insurance policy -- not the indemnity provisions of Transocean's and BP's contract -- controls the extent to which BP is covered for its operations under the Drilling Contract. Because we find this policy imposes no relevant limitations upon the extent to which BP is covered, we reverse the judgment of the district court and remand the case for entry of an appropriate judgment in accordance with this opinion. . .
    "Accordingly, we conclude: Because we find the umbrella policies between the Insurers and Transocean do not impose any relevant limitation upon the extent to which BP is an additional insured, and because the additional insured provision in the Drilling Contract is separate from and additional to the indemnity provisions therein, we find BP is entitled to coverage under each of
Transocean's policies as an additional insured as a matter of law. We reverse the judgment of the district court and remand the case with instructions to enter the appropriate judgment consistent with this opinion."
    Access the complete opinion (click here). [#Energy/OilSpill, #Remed, #CA5]
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