Hartline Barger Prevails Before the Ninth Court of Appeals
Owners of pipelines on certain property sued the property owner for damage to the pipelines allegedly caused by washout and subsidence due to excavation of the property. The property owner alleged that the damage was caused by a logging company’s work and a sand mining company’s work on the property. The property owner alleged that its contract with the logging company required the logging company to obtain liability insurance listing the property owner as an additional insured. An insurance agency issued a Certificate of Liability Insurance purportedly listing the property owner as an additional insured; however, the property owner was not an additional insured under the policy. The property owner filed a claim under the policy, which was denied. The property owner then sued the insurance agent and insurance agency, asserting claims based on negligence, fraud, negligent misrepresentation, violations of the Texas Insurance Code, and violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices-Consumer Protection Act. Hartline Barger filed a motion for summary judgment on behalf of the insurance agent and agency, arguing that (1) the claims against them were barred by the statute of limitations, (2) the insurance agent and agency did not make any representations directly to the property owner, and (3) the property owner’s damages were not proximately caused by the insurance agent or agency. The trial court granted the insurance agent and agency’s motion for summary judgment and dismissed the claims against them with prejudice, and the appellate court affirmed.