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Liability insurers generally do not owe any common law duties to injured third-party claimants who sue their insureds. After establishing (as a conceptual backdrop) the important and recognized public policies favoring prompt and fair payments by liability insurers to injured third-party claimants, this article analyzes whether claimants can effectively use the tort of abuse of process to hold liability insurers accountable when they engage in bad faith litigation tactics. The article identifies the problems that claimants may face in alleging abuse of process in the liability insurance setting, but also indicates that recent trends in this area of law suggest that it may provide an effective, even if relatively limited, means of holding liability insurers accountable for the additional injury that they cause to third-party claimants.

Publication Citation

9 Conn. Ins. L. J. 467 (2003)