Whether Belief In Non-Liability Is Reasonable Question For Jury

In Preferred Mutual Insurance Co. v. New York Fire-Shield, the Third Department analyzed the timeliness of notice provided by an insured. First, the court recognized that timely notice was still required under general liability and excess policies, and that notice made two years after the insured was aware of a possible claim would ordinarily be late. However, the court held that a reasonable belief in non-liability would excuse untimely notice, and it was for a jury to determine whether the insured’s belief was reasonable.