United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR JUDGMENT ON THE PLEADINGS
RE: DKT. NO. 40
WILLIAM H. ORRICK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Westport Insurance Corporation ("Westport") and
defendant California Casualty Management Co.
("California Casualty") both provided insurance for
three school administrators in the Moraga School District in
California. When the administrators were sued for negligent
supervision, Westport funded the settlement of the claims.
Westport now seeks contribution from California Casualty and
moves for judgment on the pleadings. For the reasons
discussed below, the motion is DENIED.
following facts are taken from Westport's complaint and
the exhibits attached to it, except where otherwise
indicated. The parties' dispute arises out of claims
brought by three students (Does 1, 2, and 3) at Joaquin
Moraga Intermediate School in the Moraga School District
("School District") who alleged that they were
sexually molested by their teacher in the mid-1990s. Compl.
¶ 2 (Dkt. No. 1). When the students came forward in
1996, the teacher killed himself. Id. In 2013, the
students sued three school administrators (collectively,
"Administrators") and the School District for
negligent supervision of the teacher. Id.
¶¶ 10-22. Does 1 and 2 filed one lawsuit against
the Administrators and the School District in January 2013.
Id. ¶ 10. Doe 3 filed another lawsuit against
the Administrators and the School District in the same month.
Id. ¶ 19. The students alleged that the teacher
had molested them in the following school years:
1993-1994 School Year
1994-1995 School Year
1995-1996 School Year
1996-1997 School Yea
Id. ¶¶ 12-14, 16-17, 21; see also
Mot. at 6 (Dkt. No. 14).
provided insurance for both the School District and the
Administrators. Compl. ¶¶ 23-30. Specifically,
Westport issued two policies of primary general liability
insurance ("Westport Primary Policies") to the
School District. One of the Westport Primary Policies was
effective from October 1, 1991 through October 1, 1994, and
the other was effective from October 1, 1994 through October
1, 1997. Id. ¶¶ 24-25. According to
Westport, the first pages of both of the Westport Primary
Policies "indicate a limit of liability of ‘$1,
000, 000 each occurrence.'" Mot. at 3 (quoting
Compl. Exs. C, D). Westport also issued four policies of
excess liability insurance ("Westport Excess
Policies") to the School District. One of the excess
policies was effective from October 1, 1991 to October 1,
1994; the other three were effective for consecutive one-year
periods starting October 1, 1994. Compl. ¶
contrast with Westport, California Casualty provided
insurance only for the Administrators, not for the School
District. Specifically, California Casualty issued successive
annual liability policies ("California Casualty
Polices") to the Association of California School
Administrators and the Association of California Community
College Administrators. Id. ¶ 31. The
California Casualty Policies were in effect from at least
July 1, 1994 to at least July 1, 1997. Id. ¶
32. Exhibit F to Westport's complaint is a copy of the
policy in effect from July 1, 1994 through July 1, 1995.
See Compl. Ex. F; Ans. ¶ 34 (Dkt. No. 4).
Westport alleges that each of the California Casualty
Policies contains "substantially similar" language.
Compl. ¶ 34. In its answer, California Casualty admits
that Exhibit F is a copy of the policy in effect from July 1,
1994 through July 1, 1995 but does not admit that each of the
California Casualty Policies uses substantially similar
language. See Ans. ¶ 34. The policy attached to
the complaint defines the term "Insured, " in
relevant part, as "[a] member of the Associate of
California School Administrators who is employed by a school
board, board of trustees or other similar governing body of
an educational unit." Compl. Ex. F § II.E. The
policy also includes the following provisions:
COVERAGES AND LIMITS OF LIABILITY
Coverage A. Administrator Excess Liability $150, 000.00 per
occurrence, Over $1, 000, 000.00 of Underlying Primary
Layer/$2, 000, 000.00 aggregate per annual policy period
[ . . . ]
In this section the Company indicates the coverages provided,
subject to the exclusions, limits of liability and other
terms of this policy.
A. ADMINISTRATORS' EXCESS LIABILITY. The Company agrees
to pay all damages in excess of the required underlying
primary collectible insurance or self-insurance which the
insured shall become legally obligated to pay as a result of
any claim arising out of an occurrence in the course of the
insured educational employment activities, and caused by any
acts or omissions of the insured, or any other person for
whose acts the insured is legally liable, not to exceed the
limits of liability stated in the Declarations for this
[ . . . ]
IV. LIMITS OF LIABILITY
The combined limits of liability for each coverage stated in
the Declarations are the limits of the Company's
liability to each Insured for all damages arising out of one
occurrence, except as provided in Coverage A, additional
coverages, but in no event shall the Company's liability
be more than $250, 000 for all damages and costs of defense
arising out of one occurrence. The fact that there may be
multiple claims against the Insured as a result of the
occurrence shall not operate to increase the limit of the
Company's liability under this policy. ...