United States District Court, D. Oregon, Portland Division
CAMPBELL GLOBAL, LLC, a Delaware limited liability company; and BASCOM SOUTHERN, LLC, a Delaware limited liability company, Plaintiffs,
AMERICAN ECONOMY INSURANCE COMPANY, an Indiana corporation; GENERAL INSURANCE COMPANY OF AMERICA, a New Hampshire corporation; and FIRST NATIONAL INSURANCE COMPANY OF AMERICA, a New Hampshire corporation, Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER
MICHAEL W. MOSMAN Chief United States District Judge.
bring this action against Defendants-insurers for breach of
contract on the basis that Defendants allegedly breached
their duty to indemnify Plaintiffs (Claim One), and for
negligent claims handling on the basis that Defendants failed
to timely indemnify Plaintiffs after an arbitration award was
entered against them (Claim Two). By Order (#15) issued
January 27, 2017, the Court granted the parties' joint
request to proceed only as to Claim One in the first stage of
this litigation, and, if necessary, to proceed to discovery
and dispositive motions on Claim Two only after resolving
dispositive motions on Claim One.
19, 2017, Defendants filed a Motion (#22) for Partial Summary
Judgment on Count One of Plaintiffs' Complaint. On May
23, 2017, Plaintiffs filed a Corrected Motion (#27) for
Summary Judgment on Stage One Claims.
reasons stated below, the Court GRANTS Defendants' Motion
(#22) for Partial Summary Judgment and DENIES Plaintiffs'
Corrected Motion (#27) for Summary Judgment on Stage One
following facts are undisputed and taken from the record on
Plaintiffs' predecessor organization leased approximately
11, 000 acres of forest land in Alabama from the Gray family
and related organizations (referred to collectively as
“the Grays”) for a term of 45 years. Defendants
provided liability insurance to Plaintiffs beginning in the
early-2000s through the termination of the lease.
other provisions, the lease required Plaintiffs to return the
land to the Grays in “good condition” upon the
termination of the lease. The lease also contained an
attorney fees provision that required the non-prevailing
party to pay the attorney fees of the prevailing party in any
action to enforce the lease. Declaration of Margaret M. Van
Valkenburg (#23) Ex. 2, at 14.
agent of the Grays surveyed the land in 2009 in anticipation
of the lease's 2013 expiration, and identified for
Plaintiffs several deficiencies in the condition of the land
that, in the Grays' view, needed to be remedied. When the
lease expired in 2013, however, the Grays still found the
condition of the land to be inadequate. Accordingly, the
Grays filed an arbitration action against Plaintiffs for,
inter alia, breach of contract and negligence.
Defendants provided a defense to Plaintiffs in the
arbitration action under a reservation of rights.
August 17, 2016, after a six-day arbitration in July 2016,
the arbitrators found Plaintiffs (Respondents in the
arbitration) to be jointly and severally liable for $3, 506,
214.00 in damages, which included $907, 714.00 in attorney
fees and costs incurred by the Grays (Claimants in the
arbitration). The arbitrators concluded the claims that were
not based on negligence or breach of contract were unfounded.
Van Valkenburg Decl. (#23) Ex. 7, at 2. With respect to
negligence and breach of contract, however, the arbitrators
As to the Claimants' remaining claims for negligence and
breach of contract, the Respondents' Motion for Judgment
as a Matter of Law is DENIED, and the Arbitrators hereby find
a. The Respondents were required to surrender the
“Lands” to the Claimants in “good
condition” as of March 31, 2013.
b. The “Lands” were not in “good
condition” as of March 31, 2013.
c. The Claimants have suffered damages due to the
“Lands” not being in “good condition”
as of March 31, 2013.
d. The “Lands” include the following specific
items for which Claimants are awarded damages:
i. Stocking - Damages for overstocked stands and understocked
stands are reasonably assessed in ...