Theall Group LLP

Toronto ON

Theall Group LLP is a commercial litigation firm committed to providing our clients with superior legal representation in complex disputes, both international and domestic. We have broad experience at all levels of the Ontario and Federal courts. Our practice includes acting for large multi-nationals and governments, with practice concentrations in the automotive and commercial insurance industries, and in the areas of product liability, risk management, class actions, and arbitration. We act exclusively for policy holders and brokers with respect to insurance coverage disputes.

Updates

Insurance

Covered for professional fees: let the church say amen
Canada | 10 March 2020

Some policyholders purchase professional fees coverage as an extension to their insurance policy's general coverage grant to reimburse an insured for the expense of hiring professionals to assist in quantifying a loss and putting a claim together to satisfy an insurer's requirements. In a case concerning a fire at a church, Ontario's Superior Court of Justice addressed who controls the decision of whether such professionals will be retained and have their fees covered by the insurance policy.

Good-faith obligations survive bankruptcy of insured
Canada | 26 November 2019

The general position that bankruptcy can substantially vary the rights of insureds has often been argued and rejected. A recent Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision has confirmed that an insurer's duty of good faith is not extinguished on the bankruptcy of the insured.

Speak now or forever hold your peace: court rejects insurer's attempt to withdraw defence
Canada | 19 November 2019

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently held that an insurer which had defended its insured for 10 months, without a reservation of rights, could not rely on a policy exclusion to withdraw its defence. In this decision, the court did not find it necessary to distinguish between waiver and estoppel. As such, insurers and insureds alike should ensure that they appreciate the potential consequences applicable to both waiver and estoppel and govern themselves accordingly.

Ontario Court of Appeal: insured's failure to provide up-to-date address not breach of duty to cooperate
Canada | 02 July 2019

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently reconfirmed that an insured's duty to cooperate with defence council appointed by its insurer is not subject to a standard of perfection. This case serves as a strong reminder that a breach of the duty to cooperate must be substantial. It shows that, in practice, without real consequences arising from an insured's conduct, there can be no substantial breach of the duty to cooperate.

Coverage 'thrilla' in Manila – court finds underinsured endorsement provides worldwide coverage
Canada | 25 June 2019

A recent Alberta Court of Queen's Bench decision demonstrates that policyholders must carefully consider the interplay between an insurance policy and its endorsements. One consideration is the distinction between endorsements that provide standalone coverage and those intended only to modify an existing policy's terms. However, most important is the overarching principle that any limitations of coverage should be clearly stated.

Ontario court rejects well-established rules for interpreting insurance policy exclusions
Canada | 14 May 2019

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice recently concluded that insurance policies should be interpreted differently when multiple insurers are involved. This decision runs contrary to the basic rules of contractual interpretation and conflicts with well-established precedent. If followed, it could lead to commercially unreasonable results and erode the benefits of coverage available to insured parties.

Injury claim between cohabiting family covered by homeowner's policy despite household exclusion
Canada | 07 May 2019

An Ontario court recently found that a personal injury claim by a daughter against her mother was covered by homeowner's insurance. While the insurance policy contained an exclusion for claims arising from injury to "any person residing in [the] household", the court concluded that the daughter was a tenant under the policy and therefore the exclusion did not apply. This case serves as a reminder that policyholders' intentions when purchasing insurance can be critically important.