AM Best is reporting on a recent decision by New York state Superior Court judge, Suzanne Adams to dismiss a lawsuit brought forth by Chubb, claiming the insurer has no obligation to indemnify or defend the Archdiocese of New York (ADNY) over allegations of sexual abuse by priests or other church personnel.

The decision was made, in part, because 99 per cent of the Child Victim Act (CVA) claims and cases remain in the discovery phase. None have resulted in a jury verdict or a determination of the church’s awareness of the abuse. Chubb’s primary claim in the case is that the cases are part of known or intentional occurrences that place them outside of the coverage offered by the company.

“The complaint sets forth no facts that would support a declaratory judgement that Chubb insurers have no obligation to indemnify, and consequently no obligation to defend, each of the 2,770 CVA-related lawsuits now in the court,” the decision reportedly states.

In an emailed statement to AM Best, Chubb says it is planning an appeal of the decision. “The fact remains that the ADNY has failed to provide information on thousands of cases of horrific sexual abuse,” Chubb told AM Best in its statement. “That information can answer the key question – what did they know and when did they know it? – which will determine whether the ADNY has proof of coverage under their insurance policies. We intend to find out.”