Obtained Judgment for Insurer in Coverage Dispute involving 537.065 Agreement and $20,000,000 Judgments

In 2022, Russell Watters and his partner John Cooney won a complex insurance coverage dispute on behalf of AMCO and Depositors Insurance involving $20,000,000 judgments against their insureds.  The judgment was entered as a result of a lawsuit brought in St. Louis County Circuit Court by two employees alleging racial discrimination by the named insured, Columbia Maintenance, Inc., and its president.  The carriers had issued a primary liability and umbrella policy which contained an Employment Related-Practices Exclusion.  Nationwide denied coverage and the insureds entered into a 537.065 agreement, dismissed the lawsuit without prejudice and went to an uncontested arbitration resulting in $20,000,000 in awards that were later confirmed and entered as a judgment in State Court.  Russ filed a Declaratory Judgment action in the United States District Court, Eastern District of Missouri and was able to obtain a summary judgment in favor of both carriers and that decision was affirmed by the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals finding the policies were not ambiguous and holding there was no coverage for the $20,000,000 judgments.  This holding by the Eight Circuit relieved AMCO and Depositors from any liability for the $20,000,000 in judgments entered by the State Court.