Logourl black
From our private database of 14,200+ case briefs...

Unigard Mutual Insurance Company v. Argonaut Insurance Company

Court of Appeals of Washington
579 P.2d 1015 (1978)


Facts

On July 8, 1973, 11-year-old William Winkler broke into Wilson Elementary School (Wilson), which is part of School District No. 81, and set fire to the contents of a trash can. He tried to extinguish the fire but was unable to. The fire spread, causing damage. Winkler had previously started fires. His parents, Ruth Winkler Hensley and Charles Hensley, had an insurance policy with Unigard Mutual Insurance Co. (Unigard) (plaintiff). Under this policy, Unigard agreed to “pay on behalf of the Insured all sums which the Insured shall become legally obligated to pay as damages because of bodily injury or property damage, to which this insurance applies, caused by an occurrence.” “Occurrence” was defined under the policy as “an accident, including injurious exposure to conditions, which results, during the endorsement term, in bodily injury or property damage.” School District No. 81 sued the Hensleys and Winkler, alleging that Winkler had carelessly and negligently caused the fire at Wilson and that the Hensleys knew Winkler had the propensity to start fires but failed to supervise him. Winkler testified that he intended to light the fire but did not intend to damage the Wilson school building. Unigard brought an action for declaratory judgment against the insurers of School District No. 81 (defendants). seeking a declaration that Unigard was not required to cover Winkler and the Hensleys. The trial court determined that Unigard was not required to cover Winkler and the Hensleys upon finding that the fire was not an accident and was therefore not an insurable occurrence under the Unigard policy. The defendants appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (McInturff, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 250,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,200 briefs, keyed to 189 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.