Fleming Wins Insurance Carrier Judgment

Article excerpt

Fleming Cos. was granted summary judgment Wednesday in a battle over insurance coverage for 10 shareholder class actions and allegations of overcharging against the wholesale food distributor.

The dispute stems from a lawsuit filed by Fleming in October 1996 against insurance carriers that provided the Oklahoma City company with directors and officers liability coverage.

Fleming had sought a declaratory judgment in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma to determine if certain policies covered Fleming executives' liability incurred in the so- called David's litigation and their liability in shareholder class action suits, which are pending in federal court. The David's lawsuit involved the supermarket's allegations of overcharging. That dispute was settled in March for $19.9 million after a $211 million judgment against Fleming was thrown out. Insurance carriers contended that the David's litigation and the shareholder class actions, which charged that Fleming failed to disclose the David's litigation to shareholders in violation of securities laws, were "interrelated," limiting coverage to a 1993 policy that provided a protective umbrella of only $50 million. …