A Texas court of appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of an insurer dismissing the insured’s breach of contract and bad faith claims based on a denial of the insured’s tender of defense of an underlying lawsuit. Coreslab Structures (Texas), Inc. v. Scottsdale Insurance Company, 496 S.W.3d 884 (Houston—[14th Dist.] 2016).
After denial of the insured’s defense tender, the insured’s defense costs were paid by another insurer. The insured sued the insurer that denied coverage for refusing to defend it, and the trial court granted the insured’s motion for summary judgment on the duty to defend. However, the trial court dismissed the insured’s insurance code and prompt payment claims based on the denial. The insurer then paid its share of defense costs, but the insured appealed the trial court’s ruling on its other claims, arguing that it was entitled to recover costs, statutory interest and damages.
The court of appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of the insurer dismissing the insured’s insurance code and prompt payment claims. The court reasoned that the insured failed to cite any case holding that an insured’s choice to seek a full defense on only one of two available policies allows the insured to recover defense costs against the chosen insurer after the other pays some or all of the defense costs. Because the insured received a full defense from another insurer, it was not harmed and cannot show damages caused by the insurer’s initial denial.