Appeal from judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County (California), which granted summary judgment in favor of defendant respondent (insurer) in action involving coverage of insurance policy.

Overview

Plaintiff appellant was an importer and wholesaler of Salmon Norway, Inc. and had a commercial general liability policy from defendant respondent. Plaintiff appellant allegedly adopted a trademark of another company to sell clothing and an action was filed against plaintiff appellant. Plaintiff appellant tendered defense of the action to defendant respondent and defendant respondent denied coverage and refused to defend. Plaintiff appellant defended itself, settled, and filed action against defendant respondent for breach of contract and bad-faith refusal to defend. Defendant respondent moved for summary judgment, arguing that there was no duty to defend, and plaintiff appellant opposed, arguing that coverage was available under advertising injury provisions of policy. The trial court granted defendant respondent’s motion, concluding that there was no coverage for trademark infringement. The appellate court reversed, finding that policy provided coverage for the action because the advertising injury provision was ambiguous and plaintiff appellant had objectively reasonable expectation of coverage, and therefore policy had to be interpreted in favor of coverage.

Outcome

The appellate court reversed grant of summary judgment, finding that policy provided coverage for the action because the advertising injury provision was ambiguous and plaintiff appellant had objectively reasonable expectation of coverage, and therefore policy had to be interpreted in favor of coverage.