Civil Authority Coverage Inapplicable Because Employees and Patients Had Access

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, in an opinion by Judge Reinhard, applying Illinois law, dismissed with prejudice the amended complaint filed by Riverside Dental of Rockford, Ltd. (“Riverside”) against Cincinnati Insurance Company (“Cincinnati”).  Riverside purchased a commercial property insurance policy which included a building and personal property coverage form and a business income coverage form.  Both of these forms contained “Civil Authority” additional coverage provisions obligating the insurer to pay for actual loss of business income “caused by action of civil authority that prohibits access to the premises.”  After the Illinois Governor issued executive orders requiring Illinois dental offices to cease providing services identified as non-essential, Riverside tendered a claim and later filed suit in state court, where Cincinnati removed to federal court.  Riverside argued that the executive orders prohibited access to the dental office for approximately 90% of its business and for non-essential business, physical access was prohibited.  The court rejected these arguments and granted Cincinnati’s motion to dismiss, finding that there was no coverage because the Governor’s orders allowed access to the premises to Riverside’s employees to perform essential services and to their patients to receive essential services.  Similarly, because there was no claim under the policy, Riverside’s bad faith claim under 215 ILCS 5/155 was properly dismissed.  Riverside Dental of Rockford, Ltd. v. Cincinnati Ins. Co., 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 120957(N.D. Ill. June 29, 2021).