Ramara Inc v. Westfield Ins. Co, No. 15-1003 (3d Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Ramara engaged Sentry as a general contractor to perform work at its Philadelphia parking garage. Sentry engaged a subcontractor, Fortress, to install concrete and steel components. As required by its agreement with Sentry, Fortress obtained a general liability insurance policy from Westfield naming Ramara as an additional insured. In April 2012, Axe, a Fortress employee, was injured in an accident. Axe filed a tort action against Ramara and Sentry but did not include Fortress as a defendant as it was immune from actions by its employees if they were entitled to compensation for their injuries under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act. Ramara tendered its defense to Westfield, which declined to defend, claiming that Axe’s complaint did not include allegations imposing that obligation under its policy. The district court granted partial summary judgment to Ramara, and later entered a second order, a quantified judgment against Westfield for Ramara’s counsel fees and costs incurred to date. The Third Circuit first held that the district court lacked jurisdiction to alter its first order with respect to the aspects of that order already on appeal. The court affirmed that Westfield has a duty to defend Ramara in the underlying Axe action.