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Amazon.com International v. American Dynasty Surplus Lines Insurance Co.
Washington Court of Appeals
85 P.3d 974 (2004)
Intouch Group (Intouch) sued Amazon.com International, Inc. (Amazon) (plaintiff) for making unauthorized use of Intouch’s patented music-sampling technology to market music to Amazon’s customers. Amazon’s primary insurance carrier, Atlantic Mutual Insurance Company (Atlantic Mutual) (defendant), insured Amazon against advertising liability, which the policy defined as including misappropriation of advertising ideas. However, only American Dynasty Surplus Lines Insurance Company (American Dynasty) (defendant), Amazon’s excess-insurance carrier, insured Amazon against patent infringement. When neither insurer would defend Amazon against Intouch, Amazon sued both insurers for a declaratory judgment enforcing their duty to defend. Amazon settled with American Dynasty, which covered the costs of Amazon’s Intouch litigation. In return, Amazon assigned its claim against Atlantic Mutual to American Dynasty. The trial court entered summary judgment for Atlantic Mutual. American Dynasty appealed to the Washington Court of Appeals.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Ellington, J.)
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