Doctrine of Forum Non Conveniens – San Jose Sharks, Et Al. v. Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company – Litigation, Mediation and Arbitration
Mound Cotton Wollan & Greengrass
United States: Doctrine of Forum Non Conveniens – San Jose Sharks, Et Al. v. Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company
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San José Sharks, et al. vs. Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company
In San José Sharks, et al. vs. Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company, et al., the California Superior Court dismissed all claims against Starr Surplus Lines, a customer of the MCWG, on the grounds that the plaintiffs, who operated a significant number of locations in and around Boston, were barred from bringing their claims for loss business revenue resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic in California. By dismissing Starr from the case on the grounds of forum not conveniens (FNC), the Court concluded that the FNC doctrine is designed to serve the interests of both litigants and the public.
The Court found that the private interests of the parties would not be served by litigating the plaintiffs’ claims in California, citing the following factors: None of the employees involved in underwriting the Starr policies work or reside in California, but are rather based in New York; the policies were purchased through brokers based in New York, where Starr is based; and the policies were negotiated in New York.
The Court accepted Starr’s argument that the public interest factors underlying the FNC doctrine also did not warrant a proceeding in California. The Court found that, although hockey is an important industry to the California economy, Starr had established that the dispute at the stand was not sufficiently related to California’s interests to warrant deciding the case there. low. Based on these considerations, the Court dismissed Starr from the case.
Partner Wayne Glaubinger and special counsel Larry Hecimovich represented the insurance company Starr Surplus Lines.
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