Court Puts Teeth (Well, Tusks, Actually) into Duty to Defend


In a close 5-4 decision that yielded two sharply worded dissents, the Washington Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals and held that the insurer breached the duty to defend a dentist who played a practical joke in Woo v. Fireman's Fund Ins. Co. Though the insurer has moved for reconsideration, and the Complex Insurance Claims Litigation Association has filed an amicus curiae brief in support of that motion, the prankster dentist may well laugh all the way to the bank following reinstatement of his bad faith claim.

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