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Indian Harbor Ins. Co. v. The City of Waukegan

2015 IL App (2d) 140293 (Ill. App., 2015)

Words & Phrases

Trigger Of Coverage

Trial Judge

Hon. Jorge Ortiz

Appellate Judge

Justice Burke


Malicious prosecution claim trigger of coverage occurs on date malicious prosecution initiated.

Fact Summary

Defendants, Juan A. Rivera, Jr., the City of Waukegan (City), and former Waukegan police officers Lucian Tessman, Donald Meadie, Fernando Shipley, Howard Pratt, Richard Davis, and Phillip Stevenson, appeal from the order granting the motion of plaintiff, Indian Harbor Insurance Company, for judgment on the pleadings, pursuant to section 2-615(e) of the Code of Civil Procedure (Code) (735 ILCS 5/2-615(e) (West 2012)). Defendants raise several issues, but the crux of the case concerns when coverage for a malicious-prosecution claim is triggered under the language of the law enforcement liability insurance policies that plaintiff issued to the City. Plaintiff contends that coverage is triggered at the commencement of the alleged malicious prosecution, as that is defined as the “wrongful conduct” under the policies. Defendants contend that coverage is triggered at the termination of the prosecution in favor of the accused. The trial court agreed with plaintiff and found that, under the plain language of plaintiff’s policies, the policies were occurrence-based and coverage was triggered at the commencement of the prosecution. Appellate court affirmed