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As NBA Teams Gather in Florida, the Rockets Have Filed a Business Interruption Lawsuit


After the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the National Basketball Association (NBA) paused the season for more than four months. In the next few weeks, the league is set to resume play in Central Florida. Known as the ‘Quarantine Bubble’, 22 of the NBA’s teams will be playing at the Disney complex in Orlando. At least one team, the Houston Rockets, will be battling both on and off the court.

As reported by Bloomberg Law, the Houston Rockets recently filed a business interruption lawsuit against their insurance company. In the legal claim, they argue that their ‘all-risk’ policy has improperly denied their COVID-19 claim. Here, our West Palm Beach commercial  litigation attorneys discuss the NBA team’s business interruption lawsuit.

Lawsuit: All-Risk Policy Denied Coverage for COVID-19 Business Interruption  

The business interruption lawsuit has been filed jointly by the Houston Rockets and the Toyota Center (the venue where they play). Submitted in a Rhode Island state court, the complaint alleges that the insurance company improperly denied their coronavirus-related business interruption claim. The commercial insurer contends that the language of the policy radically restricted coverage for virus-related damages.

However, the Houston Rockets allege that they purchased a $412 million ‘all-risk’ policy that provides broad coverage, including for virus-related losses. Similar to many other business interruption controversies, the key issue at stake here is whether or not COVID-19 counts as ‘physical damage’ to their venue. If it does, then, the Rockets believe that it would trigger many different types of coverage under the comprehensive policy. If not, then the basketball team’s policy apparently limits virus-related damage to just $100,000.

Many Business Interruption Claims are Being Denied 

The Houston Rockets’ business interruption lawsuit is a high-profile example of something we have seen all across the country: Insurance companies have been aggressive in denying COVID-19 business interruption claims. A number of different lawsuits have been filed, including in South Florida. Many businesses are dealing with deep financial stress as a result of the pandemic.

If your company’s business interruption claim was denied, you may not be out of luck. These cases are still making their way through the legal process and it is still unclear as to the limits of coverage. Remember, the insurer does not get to make the final decision on whether or not coverage applies. An experienced business litigation lawyer will review your case and help you determine if you have options for financial recovery through your commercial insurance carrier. 

Schedule a Completely Confidential Review of Your Business Interruption Claims

At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our West Palm Beach business litigation attorneys have the skills and expertise needed to represent companies in the full range of business interruption claims. If your insurance claim was denied, we are here to help. To schedule a confidential, no obligation review of your business interruption claim, please call us today. We handle business interruptions claims throughout South Florida, including in West Palm Beach, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and beyond.




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