On December 10, 2014, a unanimous panel of Louisiana’s Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment granting a motion for summary judgment in favor of a national stevedoring operator, Universal Maritime Service Corporation (UMS). UMS is represented by Chris Carey, in the firm’s Covington office, and William Sentell, in the New Orleans office. Mr. Sentell argued the appeal in front of the Fourth Circuit.
The original personal injury action was filed in 2008 against the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans (Dock Board). In a third-party demand, the Dock Board sought contractual defense and indemnity against UMS, among other stevedoring operators at the Port of New Orleans’ Nashville Avenue Terminal.
UMS filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that there was no obligation to provide contractual defense and indemnity under the facts and law applicable to the case. In affirming the trial court’s judgment dismissing the Dock Board’s claims against UMS, the Fourth Circuit panel concluded that “the indemnity clause simply does not provide, in unequivocal terms, indemnity for damages caused by the Board’s own negligence.”
The case isCharles v. Gervais, et al., No. 2014-CA-0447 (La. App. 4thCir. 12/10/14).