Note: All fields are required.

 I have read and understand the Disclaimer.

from our blog

August 29, 2017

The Insurance Industry Quick-Hit Settlement

If you’ve been in a collision and it was someone else’s fault, odds are very good that you will hear from the at-fault driver’s insurance company as soon as possible. It’s a tactic that is happening more and more in Arizona. This is done for a variety of reasons: (1) the insurance company would like […]


Duty to Defend One Claim Means an Insurer Must Defend Entire Lawsuit in Arizona

When an insurer’s policy requires that it defend the insured for one type of legal claim, Arizona law requires that the insurer defend against all claims in the lawsuit. This is also known as the “in for one in for all rule.” This means that if an individual sues an insured alleging 30 claims, but only one of them is potentially covered by the insured’s policy, the insurer still must provide a legal defense for the entire lawsuit. Although some recent cases have chipped away at this doctrine in other states, it is still currently good law in Arizona.

However, the duty to defend comes with some limitations. First, the duty to defend only arises when there is actual claim pending. The insured should also give the insurer notice of the pleadings that impose the duty to defend.  The insurer has a right to reasonably investigate the complaint to determine whether it actually has a duty to defend. Although the policy language is the most useful tool in determining whether the duty to defend exists, Arizona follows the reasonable expectation doctrine and in some cases, evidence outside of the insurance policy can be used to prove that a duty to defend exists.

Additionally, the duty to defend generally allows the insurer the right to choose defense counsel. However, in some cases, a conflict of interest can arise between the insured and insurer. If a conflict of interest exists, the insurer may lose the right to choose the defense counsel and still must pay the defense costs.


Comments Off on Duty to Defend One Claim Means an Insurer Must Defend Entire Lawsuit in Arizona

Comments are closed.

  • Shane Harward Law Offices of Shane L. Harward PLC

    10575 North 114th Street
    Suite 103
    Scottsdale, Arizona 85259

    Telephone 480-874-2918
    Facsimile 480-588-5063

    By Appointment Only:
    4809 East Thistle Landing Drive
    Suite 100
    Phoenix, Arizona 85044

    Telephone 602-384-4638

    Mailing Address:
    Post Office Box 12877
    Scottsdale, Arizona 85267