Importer seeks to avoid liability for longshoreman's death

By Mark Trammell | Dec 8, 2015

HOUSTON--An importer is suing insurers in an effort to avoid liability for a longshoreman's death.

Interoceanica Agency Inc. of Miami filed a lawsuit Aug. 25 in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas against P&O Ports Texas, certain underwriters at Lloyd’s, Great American Insurance Company of New York, and TT Club Mutual Insurance of London.

The plaintiff acts as an agent of Isabella Shipping Co., which imports fruit from Central America to Freeport, in refrigerated ocean shipping containers. The suit says P&O Ports was contracted to provide stevedore services to transport fruit, also allegedly procuring liability insurance from Great American and TT Club in the process. 

Interoceania and Isabella were both sued in connection with the death of Darcy McGinnis, a Ports' longshoreman, on Oct. 13, 2010.

The plaintiff alleges that insurers cover them and Isabella for their potential liability. However, some insurers have contested this liability and also contested which insurer is primary. 

Interoceanica Agency seeks that the court deem the aforementioned companies cover themselves and Isabella from liability over the longshoreman's death, plus an order in which said insurance companies are held responsible, and a speedy hearing. The plaintiff is represented by attorney Thomas R. Nork, of Legge, Farrow, Kimmitt, McGrath & Brown in Houston.

Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas Case number 4:15-CV-02460.

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