Here is one for an insurance attorney to answer. A potential new client comes in the door. This person says they were drinking and got drunk, then they punched a friend in the face causing injury. The friend sues for the harm that was done and your potential new client asks his insurance company to defend him in the lawsuit. Is there coverage?
Guidance for the answer is found in a 1997, Dallas Court of Appeals opinion. The opinion is styled, Wessinger v. Fire Insurance Exchange.
This is a declaratory judgment action brought by Fire Insurance against its insured under a homeowner policy. Fire Insurance sought a declaration of no coverage for an incident in which the insured became intoxicated and assaulted a third-party friend. The insured and the third-party answered and counterclaimed asserting breach of insurance contract, violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act and the Insurance Code. Fire Insurance moved for summary judgment stating that the insured’s actions were not accidental but were intentional conduct excluded from coverage. The trial court entered summary judgment in favor of the carrier.