A Justice of the UK Commercial Court (Queen’s Bench Division) has issued an opinion as a result of a trial of a “preliminary issue about the proper construction and the operation of an excess reinsurance policy of professional liability insurance, and more specifically about how it is determined whether the “excess point” that triggers the reinsurance cover has been reached.” Teal Assurance Company Limited alleged that its facultative reinsurance agreement with W.R. Berkeley Insurance (Europe) Limited and Aspen Insurance UK Limited covered certain claims arising from the operations of Teal’s insured, Black & Veatch Holding Company (Teal is a captive insurer subsidiary of Black & Veatch, a large international engineering firm), that were in excess of Black & Veatch’s primary layers of professional liability insurance. The primary insurance covered all of Black & Veatch’s claims, geographically, while the excess facultative reinsurance excluded from coverage all American liabilities. The Court held, contrary to Teal’s position, that the order in which claims should be aggregated for purposes of determining when the reinsurance was triggered (and thus, whether any non-American liabilities exceeded the primary layer), should be based on when those liabilities originated, not when they were paid to the policy limits by the primary insurer. Teal Assurance Co. Ltd. v. W.R. Berkeley Ins. (Europe) Ltd.,  EWHC 91 (Comm. Ct. Jan. 31, 2011).