Employers Mutual Casualty Company v. Holman Building Co., LLC et al.

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Justia Opinion Summary

Employers Mutual Casualty Company (Employers Mutual) appealed a circuit court's denial of its motion to intervene in a pending case. Holman Building Company was sued by multiple homeowners who claimed their homes were poorly built from inferior building materials with poor quality workmanship. In 2010, Employers Mutual moved to intervene in the action, asserting that it had issued Holman commercial general-liability and umbrella policies that covered some if not all of the allegations made by the homeowners. Upon review, the Supreme Court held that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying Employers Mutual's permissive intervention: "given the complexity of this case, the trial court was clearly within ints discretion to deny Employers Mutual's request to intervene for the purpose of obtaining a bifurcated trial of insurance-coverage issues or a special verdict or a general verdict accompanied by answers to interrogatories ... this case provides a prime example of the need for discretion in a trial court's ruling on an insurer's motion for permissive intervention." Accordingly, the Court affirmed the trial court's decision to deny the insurance company's intervention.

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REL 10/28/2011 Notice: T h i s o p i n i o n i s s u b j e c t t o formal r e v i s i o n b e f o r e p u b l i c a t i o n i n t h e advance s h e e t s o f Southern R e p o r t e r . R e a d e r s a r e r e q u e s t e d t o n o t i f y t h e R e p o r t e r o f D e c i s i o n s , Alabama A p p e l l a t e C o u r t s , 300 D e x t e r A v e n u e , M o n t g o m e r y , A l a b a m a 3 6 1 0 4 - 3 7 4 1 ((334) 2 2 9 - 0 6 4 9 ) , o f a n y t y p o g r a p h i c a l o r o t h e r e r r o r s , i n o r d e r t h a t c o r r e c t i o n s may b e made b e f o r e t h e o p i n i o n i s p r i n t e d i n Southern R e p o r t e r . SUPREME COURT OF ALABAMA OCTOBER TERM, 2011-2012 1100106 E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l C a s u a l t y Company v. Holman B u i l d i n g Co., L.L.C., e t a l . Appeal MALONE, C h i e f from Court Justice. Employers appeals from J e f f e r s o n C i r c u i t (CV-10-1890) Mutual Casualty Company the d e n i a l of i t s motion pending i n the Jefferson C i r c u i t ("Employers to intervene Court. We affirm. Mutual") i n a case 1100106 Procedural This 25, case i s f a c t u a l l y and p r o c e d u r a l l y 2010, George Raeshonda History Chavous, Hopkins, collectively Chavous, Terrell Hopkins, Spivey, Sharon Building Co., Building as Cynthia Conner, Kenturah Supply "the i n i t i a l L.L.C. Parc complaint, drywall i n construction, the with complaint, drywall that that plaintiffs. the houses applicable industry standards." plaintiffs brought on 2006 and alleged Interior, had b u i l t 2007. which "emits initial not sulfuric code and in their which and s o l d plaintiffs built In supplied manufactured i n China. The alleged Holman, that them gases, houses causing including the further accordance residential the According to and t o t h e i n h a b i t a n t s , "were building and drywall damage t o t h e h o m e [ s ] " initial Interior/Exterior plaintiffs the constructed Holman and in constructed used sued houses they had purchased i n the subdivision houses, referred ( " I n t e r i o r " ) , based Company, L.P. the i n i t i a l (hereinafter plaintiffs") ("Holman"), problems i n newly constructed Hamilton On May Lorine F e l t o n , K i m b e r l y M a r a b l e , and C h r i s H i l l to complex. alleged with the constr[u]ction B a s e d on t h e s e a l l e g a t i o n s , t h e i n i t i a l claims i n d i v i d u a l l y and 2 on behalf of a 1100106 class the ("the p u t a t i v e c l a s s " ) of Hamilton w h i c h was Parc Subdivision constructed by located included negligence houses of and training; negligent and fraudulent wanton and/or and continuing liability trespass; claims; claims Manufacturer's L i a b i l i t y and breach On and On 2010, defective 29, alleging drywall. alleged negligence, The Interior nuisance; ordinary the On initial filed J u n e 25, 2010, Holman that Interior had Alabama trade p r a c t i c e s ; sought trial. 84 Holman f i l e d a m o t i o n a plaintiffs' to the fraud complaint. cross-claim against s u p p l i e d Holman w i t h Holman sought i n d e m n i t y from I n t e r i o r wantonness, b r e a c h of w a r r a n t y , 3 Extended answer c o n t a i n i n g initial filed and products- demanded a j u r y an of trespass plaintiffs a f f i r m a t i v e defenses 2010, repair the misrepresentation; Doctrine; deceptive statement of the a l l e g e d 46 June Interior under p u n i t i v e damages and a more d e f i n i t e claims asserted and a f f i r m a t i v e defenses. for conspiracy; contract. J u n e 15, Those supervision, innocent of compensatory Alabama L.L.C." wanton hiring, f r a u d u l e n t s u p p r e s s i o n ; b r e a c h of w a r r a n t y ; and a home i n wantonness i n c o n s t r u c t i n g improper m a t e r i a l s ; negligent houses; own i n Birmingham, H o l m a n B u i l d i n g Co., claims the " a l l p e r s o n s who the and fraudulent 1100106 misrepresentation, fraudulent suppression, and breach of contract. On July against 19, 2010, I n t e r i o r f i l e d Knauf I n s u l a t i o n Knauf I n t e r n a t i o n a l Ltd. and referred a l l e g i n g that sold thedefective to collectively following contract, against breach negligence. of Knauf express and from t h e Knauf defendants as a result On July cross-claim the of this plaintiffs. the Interior also sought " t h e Knauf manufactured Interior defendants: implied indemnity f o r any l i a b i l i t y of the alleged breach warranties, of and and c o n t r i b u t i o n Interior suffered action. 21, 2010, I n t e r i o r i n which as used i nthe c o n s t r u c t i o n houses purchased by t h e i n i t i a l the T i a n j i n Co., t h eKnauf defendants drywall complaint Knauf USA; Knauf Gips KG; GmbH; a n d K n a u f P l a s t e r b o a r d (hereinafter defendants"), GmbH a / k / a a third-party filed i tasserted an a n s w e r t o Holman's 84 a f f i r m a t i v e defenses t o cross-claim. On August additional 6, 2 0 1 0 , t h e i n i t i a l plaintiffs, i n d i v i d u a l s Evelyn Rodgers and Torey together Combs, with filed an amended c o m p l a i n t , b o t h i n t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l c a p a c i t i e s a n d on behalf of the putative class. 4 (The i n i t i a l plaintiffs, 1100106 Rodgers, Combs, a n d t h e p u t a t i v e c l a s s m e m b e r s a r e h e r e i n a f t e r referred to collectively complaint, asserted On more as " t h e p l a i n t i f f s . " ) the p l a i n t i f f s i n the i n i t i a l August definite 16, asserted I n t h e amended t h e same claims as were complaint. 2010, Holman statement filed a renewed of the p l a i n t i f f s ' motion f o r fraud claims and a s s e r t e d 46 a f f i r m a t i v e d e f e n s e s t o t h e a m e n d e d c o m p l a i n t . August 23, 2010, I n t e r i o r filed an a n s w e r amended c o m p l a i n t and r e a s s e r t e d to the plaintiffs' Insulation complaint GmbH claims. filed and a s s e r t e d third-party an On answer August to 56 a f f i r m a t i v e that liability a total umbrella of As g r o u n d s i t had issued ("CGL") p o l i c y a 2010, Interior's defenses Knauf third-party to Interior's o f 10 CGL p o l i c i e s ) policy f o r each number of M u t u a l moved t o i n t e r v e n e f o r i t s motion, Holman one Employers commercial Mutual general- f o r e a c h y e a r f r o m 2001 t o 2010 ( f o r and t h a t year 9 umbrella policies). that 26, defenses complaint against i t . the action. stated plaintiffs' i t s 84 a f f i r m a t i v e On S e p t e m b e r 2, 2 0 1 0 , E m p l o y e r s in to the On coverage from i t had i s s u e d 2002 t o 2010 Employers issues 5 Mutual would be Holman one ( f o ra further total alleged presented with 1100106 regard to which, provide coverage Employers issues i f a n y , o f t h e 19 i n s u r a n c e Mutual f o r the claims asserted further alleged that i m p l i c a t e d "important questions each policies against Holman. of these coverage concerning coverage to p o t e n t i a l l y be r e s o l v e d b y t h e j u r y . " Specifically, Mutual coverage stated implicate that questions the of fact following would f o r determination Employers issues by a would jury: " a . A maximum o f o n e (1) o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] C G L p o l i c i e s may u l t i m a t e l y b e i m p l i c a t e d i n t h e l a w s u i t and t h e r e i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h i c h p o l i c y i s potentially implicated; "b. T h e r e i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a l l e g e d a g a i n s t Holman t r i g g e r any of the I n s u r i n g Agreements of [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] policies; " c . T h e r e i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman a l l e g e an ' o c c u r r e n c e , ' as r e q u i r e d by t h e I n s u r i n g A g r e e m e n t s of each of [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] p o l i c i e s ; "d. E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] CGL p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t H o l m a n a l l e g e ' b o d i l y i n j u r y , ' as r e q u i r e d b y t h e I n s u r i n g Agreements of each of [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] p o l i c i e s ; "e. E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] CGL p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t H o l m a n allege 'property damage,' as required by t h e I n s u r i n g Agreements of each of [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] policies; 6 1100106 "f. There i s a question regarding whether any alleged 'bodily injury' or 'property damage' commenced d u r i n g any o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] p o l i c y p e r i o d s , as r e q u i r e d b y t h e I n s u r i n g A g r e e m e n t s o f [Employers Mutual's] p o l i c i e s ; " g . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] C G L p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether Holman's knowledge of ' b o d i l y i n j u r y ' or ' p r o p e r t y damage' p r i o r to [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] p o l i c y p e r i o d s precludes t h e a p p l i c a t i o n o f any o f t h e I n s u r i n g Agreements of [Employers M u t u a l ' s ] p o l i c i e s ; " h . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] C G L p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether some o f t h e P l a i n t i f f s ' c l a i m s a r e b a r r e d b y t h e s u b s t a n t i v e l a w o f t h e S t a t e o f A l a b a m a a n d a r e due t o b e d i s m i s s e d , w h i c h means t h a t [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] owes no d u t y t o d e f e n d a n d / o r i n d e m n i f y H o l m a n a s t o such c l a i m s ; " i . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] C G L p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether the f o l l o w i n g e x c l u s i o n s c o n t a i n e d i n the p o l i c i e s apply to bar some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s and/or damages a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman, i n w h o l e o r i n p a r t , as f o l l o w s : ( 1 ) E x p e c t e d o r I n t e n d e d I n j u r y Exclusion, (2) P o l l u t i o n E x c l u s i o n , (3) Damage t o Property Exclusion, (4) Damage t o Y o u r Product Exclusion, (5) Damage t o Y o u r W o r k E x c l u s i o n , (6) Damage t o I m p a i r e d P r o p e r t y E x c l u s i o n , (7) R e c a l l o f P r o d u c t E x c l u s i o n , (8) t h e C o n t i n u o u s o r P r o g r e s s i v e I n j u r y o r Damage E x c l u s i o n , a n d (9) t h e Absolute E x c l u s i o n f o r Fraud, M i s r e p r e s e n t a t i o n , D e c e i t , or Suppression or Concealment of F a c t . " j . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] CGL p o l i c i e s i s i m p l i c a t e d , there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a g a i n s t H o l m a n t r i g g e r t h e i n s u r i n g a g r e e m e n t s o f one (1) o f t h e Commercial U m b r e l l a p o l i c i e s i s s u e d by [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] t o Holman, and whether the following exclusions 7 1100106 contained i n the Commercial Umbrella p o l i c i e s apply t o b a r some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a n d / o r damages a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t H o l m a n , i n w h o l e o r i n p a r t , as f o l l o w s : 1) P r o p e r t y Damage - G e n e r a l E x c l u s i o n , 2) P r o p e r t y Damage t o Y o u r P r o d u c t , Work, I m p a i r e d P r o p e r t y E x c l u s i o n , 3) P r o d u c t R e c a l l E x c l u s i o n , 4) P o l l u t i o n E x c l u s i o n , o r 5) C o n t i n u o u s o r P r o g r e s s i v e I n j u r y o r Damage E x c l u s i o n . "k. L a s t l y , e a c h o f t h e u m b r e l l a p o l i c i e s i s s u e d b y [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] t o Holman c o n t a i n s Endorsement Form CU7187 (11/88), which provides that the coverage provided by the respective umbrella p o l i c i e s w i l l n o t b e b r o a d e r t h a n t h e u n d e r l y i n g CGL p o l i c i e s i s s u e d by [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] . " Accordingly, Employers Mutual sought i n t e r v e n t i o n p u r s u a n t t o R u l e 2 4 ( b ) , A l a . R. limited either with purposes for a or issues. On September Mutual's Employers intervene. opposition 3, On 2010, motion Mutual trial filed to the to resolve a reply 2010, Mutual's 8 and f o r the of moving a general-verdict filed intervene. S e p t e m b e r 15, to Employers or Holman to C i v . P., i n discovery form pertaining for a bifurcated Employers to special-verdict interrogatories issues 2010, of p a r t i c i p a t i n g permissive numerous form coverage those coverage a brief opposing On September 10, i n support of i t s motion the p l a i n t i f f s motion to filed intervene. an 1100106 On September 15, 2010, the following letter was filed t h e c a s e by t h e H o n o r a b l e J . S c o t t V o w e l l , the p r e s i d i n g of in Court: the J e f f e r s o n C i r c u i t "Ladies and judge Gentlemen: "A n u m b e r o f C h i n e s e D r y w a l l c a s e s h a v e b e e n f i l e d in Shelby, St. Clair, Tuscaloosa and Jefferson C o u n t i e s . I n o r d e r t o a c h i e v e a ' j u s t , s p e e d y and i n e x p e n s i v e d e t e r m i n a t i o n ' of these cases ( R u l e 1, A l a . R. C i v . P.), the Presiding Judges of the c i r c u i t s i n the c o u n t i e s l i s t e d above have d e c i d e d t o c o o r d i n a t e t h e m a n a g e m e n t o f t h e s e c a s e s . We a l s o want t o work w i t h the [ m u l t i d i s t r i c t litigation] C o u r t i n New O r l e a n s i n o r d e r t o a v o i d d u p l i c a t i o n of d i s c o v e r y . " A t my r e q u e s t , A r t E d g e , who r e p r e s e n t s some o f t h e p l a i n t i f f s i n t h e s e c a s e s , h a s p r o v i d e d me w i t h a l i s t o f t h e p e n d i n g c a s e s o f w h i c h he i s a w a r e . I f a n y o f y o u know o f a n y o t h e r r e l a t e d c a s e s , e i t h e r p e n d i n g o r a b o u t t o be f i l e d , p l e a s e s e n d a c o p y o f t h i s n o t i c e t o a n y l a w y e r s who a r e n o t on o u r list. "We i n v i t e y o u t o m e e t w i t h t h e p r e s i d i n g j u d g e s o f t h e f o u r C i r c u i t s i n C o u r t r o o m 370, J e f f e r s o n C o u n t y Courthouse, Birmingham, a t 4 p.m. on Wednesday, S e p t e m b e r 22, 2010, f o r a d i s c u s s i o n about the litigation. While Alabama has no multi-circuit c o n s o l i d a t i o n s t a t u t e , t h e r e i s no r e a s o n t h e B e n c h a n d B a r c a n n o t be i n n o v a t i v e i n w o r k i n g t o g e t h e r t o achieve our mutual goals in this interesting l i t i g a t i o n . We u r g e y o u t o be p r e s e n t a n d t o be prepared to offer your suggestions for our consideration." Attached spreadsheet t o t h e S e p t e m b e r 15, listing the pending 9 2010, "Chinese l e t t e r was drywall" a computer cases: 12 1100106 s e p a r a t e cases were p e n d i n g were p e n d i n g in i n the the S t . C l a i r was listed listed Shelby Circuit having cases drywall The as arose plaintiffs and "no of On September 17, denying Employers Mutual's 22, 2010, cases 2010, i n the 2 were pending date." to A l l the the construction numerous Court use of of houses. individuals as defendants. the trial motion Employers Mutual to pertaining listed multiple Court; 7 Tuscaloosa Circuit claims cases Circuit C o u r t ; and The pending i n China these had Circuit Court. out manufactured m a j o r i t y of i n the J e f f e r s o n to c o u r t e n t e r e d an intervene. f i l e d a notice On of appeal order October from that order. Standard "Permissive of the trial permissive clearly and the Review i s within 781 So. Ins. i t s discretion." 2d Co. 172, v. 175 i s not free to merely On such on discretion a question Mutual Assurance, 630 a substitute 10 broad r e v e r s e d unless the ( A l a . 2000) Anglen, ("Universal I I " ) ) . the court's ruling i n t e r v e n t i o n w i l l n o t be Underwriters court court [exceeds] Chancey, 1993) intervention of So. (citing 2d review, 441 , "'a i t s judgment of court Inc. v. Universal 442 (Ala. reviewing for that 1100106 of the trial (Ala. Jane court.'" 2001) Doe (Lyons, 01-01, (citations review a appeal is denial not intervention Procedure trial quoting Line of were QBE 2009) 732 Corp. which but is (quoting we Austin Pub. to question on permissive of Civil 'whether the i n denying the 23 I I , 630 So. 1127, 2d at 443, Gas Pipe (5th C i r . So. 3d I n c . v. U n i t e d Serv. 470-71 re asked Rule Co., In 809 render rather 557 807, are its] discretion v. 542, N.E.2d [Alabama] Universal Orleans 749 "'"when factors exceeded 452, 23, 2d i n t e r v e n t i o n , the under (quoting F.2d 20, present,' Ins. i n t u r n New Co., 'the So. specially) Thus, permissive [clearly motion.'"'" 3d omitted)). whether 24(b) (Ala. O h i o App. appropriate court 1130 J., concurring 141 (2001) Ex p a r t e A n o n y m o u s , 803 1984)). Analysis In Universal Alabama Underwriters Ford-Mercury, Inc., I"), this insurers s i t u a t i o n s where claims that policy," procedure might or Court 574 ("Universal in Insurance might Universal II, whereby an 630 So. "recognized the not insurer 11 East 716 the dilemma covered 2d v. 2d insured be So. Co. at could was by 443, Central (Ala. being the and seek 1990) faced by sued on insurance adopted a permissive 1100106 intervention i n such a case bifurcated trial subsequent to the underlying So. 3d a t 1131 n.1. that is i n which because insurance matters tort claims. In Universal o f t h e many f a c t o r s not a matter decision f o r the purpose of of right whether involved, allow tried QBE I n s . C o r p . , 23 "emphasize[d] a bifurcated trial but, rather, intervention under the this procedure w i l l trial as g o v e r n e d by t h e i n t e r e s t s o f j u s t i c e and t h o s e factors 574 insurer See a l s o J . , concurring permissive obtain sound can invoke intervention, Rule clarification of intervention insured an I, 7 8 1 S o . 2 d a t 176 to allow an pursuant to Rule 24(b), A l a . i t s insured, 4 9 , A l a . R. coverage so t h a t t h e C i v . P., and t h e r e b y issues, [ 1 ] falls within the court."). insurer i n the underlying f o r the purpose Universal ("Whether against d i s c r e t i o n of the t r i a l Alternatively, Chancey, specially) R. C i v . P., i n a t o r t a c t i o n insurer the d i s c r e t i o n of the a r t i c u l a t e d i n A l a . R. C i v . P. 4 2 ( b ) . " So. 2d a t 723-24. (Lyons, within be alternative court rest seeking a would I , t h i s Court f o r the insurer, to of tort of requesting may seek litigation permissive against the a special-verdict form Rule 49 g o v e r n s verdict forms generally, including g e n e r a l v e r d i c t s , s p e c i a l v e r d i c t s , and i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s . 1 12 1100106 or a general-verdict that i t may form ascertain accompanied the b a s i s event the j u r y f i n d s against 781 So. 2d Chancey, at supra, intervention the 2d "broad at 174-75; this insured -- right -- reaffirmed i n nature See, In e.g., i n the Chancey, Universal i t s holding and, thus, court. II and that was Chancey, 2d to intervene such within 781 So. 720 23 Chancey, States trial F i d . & Guar. an action 3d at against an i t s or to r e q u e s t a has So. Co. no 2d at 174-75; v. Adams, absolute the distinction, i t s insured." 485 right 1130. II against Mutual points insurer seeking r e q u e s t d i f f e r e n t forms of r e l i e f on t h i s action 781 "[A]n insurer in However, Employers Universal civil a bifurcated only. ( A l a . 1986). So. in a recognizes, form with i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s or a s p e c i a l - v e r d i c t I ; and U n i t e d intervene Corp., as E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l e x p r e s s l y i s permissive Universal and II. Court e i t h e r to seek general-verdict to Universal verdict so 175. insurer's So. i t s insured. d i s c r e t i o n " of the t r i a l Accordingly, form interrogatories of the j u r y ' s permissive was by Employers out t h a t to 13 Ins. in Universal intervene i n the a l t e r n a t i v e . Mutual asks t h i s QBE did I not Seizing Court to hold 1100106 that, (1) where intervention an and insurer (2) w h e r e , as "both forms of r e l i e f ... a trial court permissive (emphasis We the criteria in this loses for case, the under U n i v e r s a l I and Employers Mutual's permissive insurer seeks Universal i t s d i s c r e t i o n to deny the intervention. II, motion" brief, at for 17 added). decline intervention court. meets to so hold. is inherently within R u l e 2 4 ( b ) , A l a . R. permissive A motion the Civ. P., The rule intervention. for permissive d i s c r e t i o n of sets out the provides, the trial criteria in for pertinent part: "Upon t i m e l y a p p l i c a t i o n a n y o n e may be p e r m i t t e d t o i n t e r v e n e i n an a c t i o n ... when an a p p l i c a n t ' s claim o r d e f e n s e and t h e m a i n a c t i o n h a v e a q u e s t i o n o f law or fact in common. ... In exercising its discretion the court shall consider whether the intervention will unduly delay or p r e j u d i c e the a d j u d i c a t i o n of the r i g h t s of the o r i g i n a l p a r t i e s . " (Emphasis 184 added.) (Ala. indicates 1998) that mandatory). its See (holding a to Ex parte that the procedural Nothing discretion also i n Rule grant or rule deny 14 use is 24(b) a Scott, of 728 So. the word "may" rather than permissive deprives motion a trial seeking 2d court 172, of permissive 1100106 intervention multiple merely forms Further, permissive for of because relief in light the i n the of the putative trial court, 2 requirements we of Rule 24(b) s u b s t i t u t i n g our h o l d t h a t the trial permissive case, the intervention. trial court was deny Employers M u t u a l ' s of court a special answers only within complexity motion of this i t s discretion to request to intervene f o r the purpose of insurance-coverage issues verdict or a general verdict accompanied by to i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s . Moreover, because the not clearly the did a bifurcated trial obtaining or Given for judgment not exceed i t s d i s c r e t i o n i n d e n y i n g Employers M u t u a l ' s for seeks alternative. i n t e r v e n t i o n , and w i t h o u t t h a t of the intervenor of managing this trial c o u r t was single complex faced w i t h the case, but task also of When a p p l y i n g t h e e x c e e d s - i t s - d i s c r e t i o n s t a n d a r d , "'a r e v i e w i n g c o u r t i s not f r e e to m e r e l y s u b s t i t u t e i t s judgment for t h a t of the t r i a l c o u r t . ' " Ex p a r t e A n o n y m o u s , 803 So. 2 d a t 557 (Lyons, J . , c o n c u r r i n g s p e c i a l l y ) ( q u o t i n g In re Jane Doe 0 1 - 0 1 , 141 O h i o A p p . 3d a t 2 3 , 749 N . E . 2 d a t 8 0 9 ) . See a l s o QBE Ins. Corp., 23 So. 3d a t 1130 ( " ' " [ W ] h e n we are asked to review a d e n i a l of p e r m i s s i v e i n t e r v e n t i o n , the q u e s t i o n on a p p e a l i s n o t w h e t h e r ' t h e f a c t o r s w h i c h render p e r m i s s i v e i n t e r v e n t i o n a p p r o p r i a t e under [Alabama] R u l e of C i v i l P r o c e d u r e 24(b) were p r e s e n t , ' but i s r a t h e r 'whether the t r i a l c o u r t [ c l e a r l y exceeded i t s ] d i s c r e t i o n i n denying the motion.'"'" ( q u o t i n g U n i v e r s a l I I , 630 So. 2 d a t 443, quoting i n t u r n New Orleans Pub. Serv. I n c . , 732 F.2d at 470-71)). 2 15 1100106 coordinating i t s case circuits as this provides in case a well trial permissive as management with with federal judges multidistrict a prime example of the court's ruling intervention. As on we i n three an other litigation, need f o r insurer's discretion motion for stated i n Universal I: "The comments t o R u l e 42(b) ... e m p h a s i z e t h a t a trial c o u r t has broad freedom to order separate trials on different issues or with respect to d i f f e r e n t p a r t i e s i n order to e f f e c t u a t e the goals o f j u s t i c e a n d j u d i c i a l e c o n o m y . ... The C o u r t n o t e d [ i n C o b u r n v . A m e r i c a n L i b e r t y I n s . Co., 341 So. 2 d 717 ( A l a . 1 977),] t h a t the t r i a l court i s i n a ' p o s i t i o n to e v a l u a t e , w i t h i n the p o s t u r e of the case, the matter of t r i a l convenience and t o shape t h e o r d e r o f t r i a l . ' See a l s o Ex p a r t e R.B. Ethridge & Assocs., I n c . , 494 So. 2d 54 ( A l a . 1986) (Rule 42(b) g i v e s the t r i a l c o u r t s great f l e x i b i l i t y i n complex l i t i g a t i o n cases) " 574 So. 2d Street, 767 established authority orderly Xpert at and Tune, 724 (emphasis added). See also Mangiafico So. 2d 1103, 1105 (Ala. 2000 ) that a trial court must be vested in order to 'to manage i t s affairs expeditious Inc., Accordingly, Employers Mutual's 553 we So. disposition 2d affirm motion 82, the 87 of (Ala. trial 16 is well with the achieve cases.' the Iverson v. 1989)."). court's for permissive AFFIRMED. ("It v. order denying intervention. 1100106 Woodall, Stuart, Parker, Shaw, i n the result. concur. Bolin, J . , concurs Murdock, J., dissents. 17 Main, and Wise, JJ., 1100106 MURDOCK, J u s t i c e Until in this (dissenting). today, State no p u b l i s h e d has insurer h a d made request that a addressed dual the t r i a l opinion o f an a p p e l l a t e a i n which case request court a liability f o r intervention, allow intervention court i.e., a under either the p r o c e d u r e o u t l i n e d i n U n i v e r s a l U n d e r w r i t e r s I n s u r a n c e Co. v. East (Ala. Central Alabama 1991) ( " U n i v e r s a l Ford-Mercurv. I n c . , 574 S o . 2 d 7 1 6 I " ) , or t h e procedure contemplated by U n i v e r s a l U n d e r w r i t e r s I n s u r a n c e C o . v . A n g l e n , 630 S o . 2 d 4 4 1 (Ala. 1993) ( " U n i v e r s a l relief under both. the present case. the trial or I I " ) , and t h e t r i a l court The m a i n o p i n i o n u p h o l d s I respectfully dissent has d e n i e d such a d e n i a l i n because I believe c o u r t e r r e d i n n o t a l l o w i n g one f o r m o f i n t e r v e n t i o n the other. The liability main opinion explains insurance coverage that issues there are multiple presented i n this case: "On September 2, 2010, Employers Mutual [ C a s u a l t y Company] moved t o i n t e r v e n e i n t h e a c t i o n . As g r o u n d s f o r i t s m o t i o n , E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l s t a t e d t h a t i t h a d i s s u e d Holman [ B u i l d i n g Co., L.L.C.,] one c o m m e r c i a l g e n e r a l - l i a b i l i t y ('CGL') p o l i c y f o r e a c h y e a r f r o m 2 0 0 1 t o 2 0 1 0 ( f o r a t o t a l o f 10 CGL p o l i c i e s ) a n d t h a t i t h a d i s s u e d Holman one u m b r e l l a p o l i c y f o r e a c h y e a r f r o m 2002 t o 2010 ( f o r a t o t a l of 9 u m b r e l l a p o l i c i e s ) . Employers Mutual f u r t h e r a l l e g e d t h a t a number o f c o v e r a g e i s s u e s w o u l d be 18 1100106 p r e s e n t e d w i t h r e g a r d t o w h i c h , i f a n y , o f t h e 19 insurance p o l i c i e s would provide coverage f o r the c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman. Employers Mutual f u r t h e r a l l e g e d t h a t each of these coverage i s s u e s i m p l i c a t e d 'important questions concerning coverage to potentially be resolved by the jury.' Specifically, Employers Mutual stated that the f o l l o w i n g coverage issues would i m p l i c a t e questions of f a c t f o r d e t e r m i n a t i o n by a j u r y : " ' a . A maximum o f o n e (1) o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL p o l i c i e s may u l t i m a t e l y b e i m p l i c a t e d i n t h e l a w s u i t and t h e r e i s a question regarding which policy i s potentially implicated; "'b. T h e r e i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a l l e g e d a g a i n s t Holman trigger any of the Insuring Agreements of [Employers Mutual's] policies; "'c. There i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman a l l e g e an " o c c u r r e n c e , " as r e q u i r e d by the I n s u r i n g Agreements of each of [Employers Mutual's] policies; " ' d . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL p o l i c i e s i s implicated, there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f the c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman a l l e g e "bodily injury," as required by the I n s u r i n g Agreements of each of [Employers Mutual's] policies; " ' e . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL p o l i c i e s i s implicated, there i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f the c l a i m s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman a l l e g e "property damage," as r e q u i r e d by t h e 19 1100106 I n s u r i n g Agreements Mutual's] policies; of each of [Employers " ' f . There i s a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether any a l l e g e d " b o d i l y i n j u r y " o r "property damage" commenced d u r i n g any o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] p o l i c y p e r i o d s , as r e q u i r e d by the Insuring Agreements of [Employers Mutual's] policies; " ' g . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL policies i s implicated, there is a question regarding whether Holman's knowledge of " b o d i l y i n j u r y " or " p r o p e r t y damage" prior to [Employers Mutual's] p o l i c y p e r i o d s p r e c l u d e s the a p p l i c a t i o n of any of the Insuring Agreements of [Employers Mutual's] policies; " ' h . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL policies i s implicated, there is a question regarding whether some o f the Plaintiffs' claims are barred by the s u b s t a n t i v e law o f t h e S t a t e o f A l a b a m a and a r e due t o be d i s m i s s e d , w h i c h means t h a t [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] owes no d u t y t o d e f e n d a n d / o r i n d e m n i f y H o l m a n as t o s u c h c l a i m s ; " ' i . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s Mutual's] CGL policies i s implicated, there is a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g whether the f o l l o w i n g e x c l u s i o n s c o n t a i n e d i n the p o l i c i e s apply t o b a r some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s and/or damages a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman, i n w h o l e o r i n p a r t , as f o l l o w s : (1) E x p e c t e d or Intended I n j u r y E x c l u s i o n , (2) Pollution Exclusion, (3) Damage to Property Exclusion, (4) Damage to Your Product Exclusion, (5) Damage to Your Work E x c l u s i o n , (6) Damage t o I m p a i r e d Property E x c l u s i o n , (7) R e c a l l o f P r o d u c t E x c l u s i o n , (8) t h e C o n t i n u o u s o r P r o g r e s s i v e I n j u r y o r 20 1100106 Damage E x c l u s i o n , and Exclusion for Fraud, D e c e i t , or Suppression Fact. (9) the Absolute Misrepresentation, or Concealment of " ' j . E v e n i f one o f [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ' s ] CGL policies i s implicated, there is a q u e s t i o n r e g a r d i n g w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f the claims against Holman trigger the insuring agreements of one (1) of the Commercial Umbrella policies issued by [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] t o Holman, and w h e t h e r the f o l l o w i n g e x c l u s i o n s c o n t a i n e d i n the Commercial Umbrella p o l i c i e s apply to bar some o r a l l o f t h e c l a i m s a n d / o r d a m a g e s a s s e r t e d a g a i n s t Holman, i n whole or i n p a r t , as f o l l o w s : 1) P r o p e r t y Damage General E x c l u s i o n , 2) P r o p e r t y Damage t o Your Product, Work, Impaired Property E x c l u s i o n , 3) P r o d u c t R e c a l l E x c l u s i o n , 4) P o l l u t i o n E x c l u s i o n , o r 5) C o n t i n u o u s o r P r o g r e s s i v e I n j u r y o r Damage E x c l u s i o n . "'k. L a s t l y , e a c h of t h e u m b r e l l a p o l i c i e s issued by [Employers Mutual] to Holman c o n t a i n s E n d o r s e m e n t F o r m CU7187 (11/88), which p r o v i d e s t h a t the coverage p r o v i d e d by t h e r e s p e c t i v e u m b r e l l a p o l i c i e s will not be broader than the underlying CGL p o l i c i e s i s s u e d by [ E m p l o y e r s M u t u a l ] . ' " So. The 3d main separate Alabama those at . opinion cases pending counties, presented plaintiffs also each here; against in of those Holman notes, however, Jefferson which that County involves and claims cases have been f i l e d Building 21 Co., there two are other similar by L.L.C., 21 to different and other 1100106 defendants. Circuit those Although Court cases, presiding trial attempted based judge on on action unlike colleagues, these separate before In policy, structure with 27, some its own actions has Universal coordination by the that the a c t i o n w i l l p r o c e e d as trial. conclude that a material bearing a Therefore, the on that I, this Court recognized pendency the of question the dilemma was being might covered by the insurance alternate procedure involving and bifurcated and we or might adopted an intervention indicated not be a as seek p e r m i s s i v e i n t e r v e n t i o n i n the u n d e r l y i n g the faced insured Alternatively, verdict entered of i n s i t u a t i o n s where the permissive against Jefferson i t appears separate I cannot the order 2010, plaintiff's of us. insurers claims to judge a case-management of each i n d i v i d u a l my presiding September separate by the insured form interrogatories or so f o r the a in Universal purpose of general-verdict that i t may 22 I I , an tort ascertain may litigation a special- accompanied the on trial. insurer requesting form sued basis of by the 1100106 jury's verdict insured. i n the event the jury finds against i t s 3 T h e r e a p p e a r s t o b e much w i s d o m i n t h e v i e w s e x p r e s s e d by J u s t i c e Jones i n U n i v e r s a l I r e g a r d i n g t h e p r a c t i c e o f a l l o w i n g an i n s u r e r t o i n t e r v e n e f o r t h e p u r p o s e o f r e q u e s t i n g i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s u n d e r R u l e 4 9 , A l a . R. C i v . P. Some o f J u s t i c e J o n e s ' s v i e w s , as e x p r e s s e d i n h i s s p e c i a l w r i t i n g , are as f o l l o w s : 3 "Having v o l u n t a r i l y o f f e r e d t o submit i t s e l f t o the j u r i s d i c t i o n o f t h e c o u r t , and thus h a v i n g agreed t o be b o u n d b y t h e j u r y v e r d i c t i n t h e t r i a l b y t h e p l a i n t i f f against i t s potential insured, Universal, the i n s u r e r , a s k s s i m p l y t o be a l l o w e d t o i n t e r v e n e f o r t h e l i m i t e d p u r p o s e o f i n v o k i n g R u l e 49, w h i c h a u t h o r i z e s t h e j u r y ' s use of s p e c i a l i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s to d e s i g n a t e under w h i c h , i f any, o f t h e c l a i m s i t found f o r the p l a i n t i f f . "One w o u l d h a v e t h o u g h t ( o r a t l e a s t I d i d ) t h a t the i n t e r v e n t i o n p r e s c r i b e d i n Lowe v . N a t i o n w i d e Ins. C o . , 5 2 1 S o . 2 d 130 9 ( A l a . 1 988 ) , w o u l d b e i n t e r p r e t e d a s d i r e c t a u t h o r i t y ( i f , i n d e e d , common s e n s e was n o t o f i t s e l f s u f f i c i e n t a u t h o r i t y ) f o r the proposition that Universal's interest i n the outcome of the instant litigation, albeit both l i m i t e d and c o n t i n g e n t , would p e r m i t intervention concomitant with i t s limited interest. Indeed, N a t i o n w i d e ' s i n t e r e s t i n t h e Lowe c a s e was e q u a l l y l i m i t e d and c o n t i n g e n t . "The i n s u r e r ' s i n t e r e s t i n b o t h t h i s c a s e a n d i n Lowe, i n a b r o a d s e n s e , d e a l s w i t h t h e i s s u e o f c o v e r a g e . I n L o w e , t h e i n s u r e d h a d no u n d e r i n s u r e d c o v e r a g e ( a n d , t h u s , t h e i n s u r e r h a d no l i a b i l i t y ) unless the jury's verdict for the p l a i n t i f f exceeded the amount of the primary coverage. Here, t h e i n s u r e r h a s no l i a b i l i t y t o t h e p l a i n t i f f , unless the j u r y awards t h e p l a i n t i f f damages u n d e r a t h e o r y of l i a b i l i t y f o r w h i c h t h e p o l i c y p r o v i d e s c o v e r a g e . 23 1100106 By the d e p r i v i n g Employers Mutual Casualty two a l t e r n a t i v e procedures Universal I I , today's decision to attempt to l i t i g a t e , extent attempt Insurance Corp. found merit such separate leaves i n a separate, of i t s l i a b i l i t y , in a outlined i n Universal EMC with would but subsequent a c t i o n , the be inadequate. C o . , 23 S o . 3 d 1127 i n the insurer's I and no c h o i c e i f any, t o t h e i n s u r e d . action v. A u s t i n ("EMC") o f b o t h o f Such an In QBE (Ala. 2009), I argument as t o t h e i n a d e q u a c y o f an a c t i o n : "I conclude that a subsequent d e c l a r a t o r y - j u d g m e n t a c t i o n b y QBE w o u l d n o t b e a n a d e q u a t e s u b s t i t u t e f o r QBE's i n t e r v e n t i o n i n t h i s a c t i o n a n d t h a t QBE l i k e l y would s u f f e r d e f i n i t e p r e j u d i c e i f i t i s not allowed to intervene. Again, I believe there i s m e r i t i n much o f QBE's a r g u m e n t : A general verdict for this plaintiff may be s u f f i c i e n t f o r execution against these defendants, but, because c e r t a i n of the p l a i n t i f f ' s t h e o r i e s are c l e a r l y o u t s i d e t h e coverage p r o v i d e d by t h e p o l i c y , i t w o u l d o b v i o u s l y n o t be s u f f i c i e n t f o r e x e c u t i o n against U n i v e r s a l . This, then, i s the c l a s s i c case f o r t h e i n v o c a t i o n o f Rule 49." 574 S o . 2 d a t 7 2 7 . J u s t i c e J o n e s a l s o r e s p o n d e d t o c o n c e r n s t h a t s p e c i a l i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s might c o n f u s e t h e j u r y by n o t i n g t h a t " t r i a l j u d g e s know how t o d r a f t f a i r a n d i m p a r t i a l j u r y i n s t r u c t i o n s , i n c l u d i n g i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s c o n t e m p l a t e d by R u l e 4 9 , " a n d t h a t he c o u l d n o t u n d e r s t a n d how t h e p l a i n t i f f w o u l d be prejudiced, rather than aided, by t h e t r i a l court's granting of the p e t i t i o n f o r l i m i t e d i n t e r v e n t i o n f o r the p u r p o s e o f p r o p o s i n g s u c h i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s . 574 S o . 2 d a t 7 2 8 . 24 1100106 "'A d e c l a r a t o r y j u d g m e n t a c t i o n b y QBE w o u l d n o t be an a d e q u a t e r e m e d y t o p r o t e c t its i n t e r e s t i n t h i s c a s e . The coverage issues in this case are entirely fact based. A separate declaratory judgment a c t i o n cannot determine the f a c t u a l b a s i s f o r t h e damages a w a r d e d i n t h i s a c t i o n i f t h e r e i s a g e n e r a l v e r d i c t , and therefore, a d e c l a r a t o r y judgment cannot determine the extent of damages awarded for covered consequential damages, v e r s u s noncovered damages f o r r e p l a c e m e n t o r r e p a i r o f the insured's work. Further, even i f a declaratory judgment was an effective r e m e d y f o r QBE t o r e s o l v e c o v e r a g e i s s u e s , such an action would be wasteful of judicial resources, since the coverage q u e s t i o n s c a n be m o r e e f f i c i e n t l y r e s o l v e d in this action.'" 23 So. 3d a t 1135 I find in the merit present (Murdock, J . , d i s s e n t i n g ) i n the (emphasis s i m i l a r a r g u m e n t made b y the added). insurer case: " P l a i n t i f f s s e e k r e c o v e r y a g a i n s t EMC's i n s u r e d , Holman B u i l d i n g Company, LLC. A s u b s t a n t i a l q u e s t i o n exists as t o w h e t h e r some o r a l l o f t h e counts a l l e g e d b y P l a i n t i f f s a g a i n s t H o l m a n t r i g g e r one of t h e I n s u r i n g A g r e e m e n t ( s ) o f EMC's r e s p e c t i v e CGL policies. " F o r e x a m p l e , EMC may h a v e no d u t y t o i n d e m n i f y Holman f o r t h e s e c l a i m s a l l e g i n g ' p r o p e r t y damage' through operation of the Damage to Your Work E x c l u s i o n i n EMC's r e s p e c t i v e p o l i c i e s , w h i c h are v a l i d under Alabama law. ... T h u s , some o f the damages claimed by Plaintiffs are outside the c o v e r a g e p r o v i d e d b y one (1) o f EMC's p o l i c i e s to Holman; and EMC w o u l d h a v e no duty to indemnify 25 1100106 Holman f o r t h e damages w h i c h o f EMC's p o l i c i e s . do n o t t r i g g e r o n e (1) "In c o n t r a s t , P l a i n t i f f s a l s o a l l e g e t h e y have suffered 'mental anguish', which i s considered ' b o d i l y i n j u r y ' u n d e r a CGL P o l i c y "Therefore, a s t h e C o u r t c a n s e e , some o f t h e c l a i m s a l l e g e d b y P l a i n t i f f s may p o t e n t i a l l y t r i g g e r EMC's d u t y t o i n d e m n i f y H o l m a n f o r t h e some o f t h e losses claimed by Plaintiffs, and some of Plaintiffs' c l a i m s may n o t t r i g g e r EMC's d u t y t o i n d e m n i f y Holman." EMC's brief, Universal as at 21-23 I , EMC c o n t i n u e s (footnotes omitted). by n o t i n g , Referring c o r r e c t l y i n my to opinion, follows: " U n i v e r s a l a r g u e d , a s EMC d o e s h e r e , 'that i f a general v e r d i c t i s returned against the insured d e f e n d a n t s . U n i v e r s a l w i l l h a v e no way t o d e t e r m i n e what c l a i m s a r e c o v e r e d u n d e r t h e p o l i c y . B a s e d on t h e s e a r g u m e n t s . U n i v e r s a l a s s e r t s t h a t i t h a s an interest relating to the subject matter of the a c t i o n t h a t , under t h e r u l e s o f f a i r n e s s and e q u i t y , gives i t a r i g h t of intervention,[ ] or, i n the 4 Rule 24(a)(2), Ala. "intervention of right": 4 R. Civ. P., provides for "when t h e a p p l i c a n t c l a i m s a n i n t e r e s t r e l a t i n g t o the p r o p e r t y or t r a n s a c t i o n which i s t h e s u b j e c t o f t h e a c t i o n and t h e a p p l i c a n t i s so s i t u a t e d t h a t t h e d i s p o s i t i o n o f t h e a c t i o n may a s a p r a c t i c a l m a t t e r i m p a i r o r impede t h e a p p l i c a n t ' s a b i l i t y t o p r o t e c t that i n t e r e s t , unless the applicant's i n t e r e s t i s a d e q u a t e l y r e p r e s e n t e d by e x i s t i n g p a r t i e s . " We h a v e n o t b e e n a s k e d i n t h i s c a s e t o r e v i s i t t h e h o l d i n g i n Universal I that a liability insurer i s not e n t i t l e d to 26 1100106 a l t e r n a t i v e , t h a t p e r m i s s i v e i n t e r v e n t i o n s h o u l d be allowed.' Universal I , 574 S o . 2 d , a t 7 1 8 - 9 . A s Universal c o r r e c t l y pointed o u t , t h i s Court has recognized, 'the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of going behind a g e n e r a l v e r d i c t t o d e t e r m i n e t h e t h e o r i e s on w h i c h the j u r y based i t s v e r d i c t ' . U n i v e r s a l I , a t 720 (emphasis s u p p l i e d ) ( ( c i t i n g Alabama Hosp. Ass'n T r u s t v . M u t u a l A s s u r . S o c . o f A l a b a m a , 538 S o . 2 d 1209,1215 ( A l a . 1989) ('Since no special i n t e r r o g a t o r i e s were s u b m i t t e d t o t h e j u r y , i t i s n o t p o s s i b l e f o r t h i s C o u r t t o now d e t e r m i n e w h a t was the basis f o r the jury verdict finding Lloyd Noland EMC's brief, generally 1992) liable.'))." at 24-25 (emphasis Root v. C i t y o f M o b i l e , ("The litigation, purpose of to discourage Rule added i s to a multiplicity the intervener from decisis i n subsequent l i t i g a t i o n the possible anticipate future of lawsuits, and t o prejudice l a w and f a c t . Thus, as a g e n e r a l p r o p o s i t i o n . be liberally I also believe argument t h a t to allow this the denial a c a s e s u c h as t h i s g i v e s e.g., Alabama Alabama, intervene Hosp. Court Ass'n as a m a t t e r R u l e 24 i s t o should further examine Trust of right 27 v. Mut. See, Assur. Soc. of that, i fa jury 1989) ( h o l d i n g i n a case EMC's b y an i n s u r e r i n to due-process concerns. 538 S o . 2 d 1 2 0 9 ( A l a . stare intervention."). of any i n t e r v e n t i o n rise of i n v o l v i n g t h e same q u e s t i o n s of construed See 592 S o . 2 d 1 0 5 1 , 1 0 5 3 ( A l a . 24 relieve in brief). such as this. 1100106 enters cannot a general against an insured, the insurer "go b e h i n d " t h e j u r y v e r d i c t t o d e t e r m i n e t h e b a s i s the jury's 74, 78 was verdict award); ( A l a . 1991) 'general' Baptist ("Additionally, rather exactly why the problem presented Mem'l H o s p . jury 'specific' found against sides Bowen, because than f o r both v. we So. verdict cannot Baptist i s not the 591 determine the a d d r e s s e d by t h i s C o u r t i n Alabama H o s p i t a l A s s o c i a t i o n The problem Trust: "The i s s u e i n t h i s c a s e i s w h e t h e r t h e v e r d i c t i n the [ p r i o r ] case against L l o y d Noland [Foundation, I n c . , ] was b a s e d u p o n t h e j u r y ' s f i n d i n g t h a t L l o y d N o l a n d was l i a b l e b e c a u s e o f t h e n e g l i g e n c e o f t h e two medical doctors, Habachy and Park. This is impossible to r e s o l v e , because the v e r d i c t of the jury was a general one and because there was evidence from which the jury could have found liability as to Lloyd Noland based upon the negligence of other employees of Lloyd Noland. Absent a s p e c i a l v e r d i c t , the f a c t of coverage i s impossible to prove." 538 So. 2d a t 1216 (emphasis added). 28 2d form alone."). unlike for