Coverage Analysis
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STATE BY STATE SURVEY

PUERTO RICO
 (1st Circuit)

  Burden of Proof

  Although the burden of proving a policy exclusion falls on the insurer, an insured must prove an exception to an exclusion that reinstates coverage.  In Re Reinforced Earth Co., 925 F.Supp. 913 (D.P.R. 1996).  

  DISCOVERY ISSUES

   --Claims Manuals
 

   --Drafting History
 

   --Other Policyholder Claims
 

   --Reinsurance Information
 

   --Reserves
 

  Duty to Defend

  An insurer has no duty to defend if there is no potential of liability under a policy.  Reyes Lopez v. Misner Marine Construction Co., 664 F.Supp. 652, 657 (D.P.R. 1987).  

  STANDARDS FOR POLICY INTERPRETATION

  Under the law of Puerto Rico, policy terms are to be interpreted in accordance with their common and general usage.  Marin v. American International Ins. Co., 94 JTS 132 (P.R. 1994).  A policy exclusion is to be interpreted in accordance with its particular terms and will not be rendered ambiguous based upon clauses that appear elsewhere in the contract.  Melendez Pineiro v. Levit and Sons, 91 JT S95 (P.R. 1991).  Although ambiguities in the policy shall be resolved in favor of the insured, the doctrine does not require that clear and unambiguous terms be interpreted in favor of coverage.  Marin, supra; In Re Reinforced Earth Co., 925 F.Supp. 913 (D.P.R. 1996).

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