Dismissal - Contract Defense and Indemnity Claim January 2014
Lori A. Vanderlaan and Fritz V. Wilson
Plaintiff slipped and fell at his employer's facility on a new floor installed by Defendant. Plaintiff sued Defendant floor installer and others. Plaintiff’s employer, a Fortune 100 Company, also sued Defendant floor installer for breach of contract in failing to indemnify the employer for over $400,000 in worker’s compensation payments and the refusal of Defendant and its insurance carrier to defend the employer on a third party contribution claim. BVH filed a motion to dismiss the claim based on the ambiguous provisions of the contract drafted by the employer and public policy arguments. The motion was granted and the third party complaint was dismissed. Thereafter, the employer waived its worker’s compensation claim and the case was settled.