Vermont Mutual Insurance Co. v. PoirierAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Judicial Court reversed the judgment of the superior court in favor of Insureds in this insurance dispute over attorney's fees, holding that attorney's fees under Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 93A are not awarded as "damages because of 'bodily injury' and are not 'costs taxed against the insured.'"
At issue was whether Insureds' insurance policy, which covered "sums that the insured becomes legally obligated to pay as damages because of 'bodily injury,'"included Insureds' liability for attorney's fees under chapter 93A, section 9(4) in an action for breach of warranty resulting in bodily injury. After paying the substantive damages on the claim, Insurer brought this declaratory judgment action to determine whether it was also responsible for attorney's fees. The superior court concluded that the policy did cover attorney's fees. The Supreme Judicial Court reversed, holding that Insureds' policy did not cover the award of attorney's fees under chapter 93A.