Indemnity Cross-Claims: How Do They Work?

When your company has been named in a premises liability lawsuit, it can feel as if your financial future is at risk. Obtaining the counsel of an experienced liability defense attorney can clarify your options, as well as provide you with a number of strategies that may minimize your legal vulnerability.

One such strategy is filing an indemnity cross-claim, which is used by defendants in premises liability lawsuits to name other parties who are responsible for the injuries suffered by a plaintiff in the case. In an indemnity cross-claim, the defendant requests that these parties pay the damages that may be assessed against the defendant, and that the other parties indemnify (hold harmless) the original defendant from the claims of the plaintiff.

Our law firm, The Law Office of Katherine R. Moore, applies more than 30 years of collective attorney experience to protect you in premises liability cases. We can suggest strategies, including indemnity cross-claims, that can reduce the legal fees and expenses for which you may ultimately be responsible.

An Example Of Indemnity Cross-Claims In Action

If a grocery store is named in a premises liability action in which the plaintiff was injured when they slipped on the floor, it may come to light that the store contracts with a janitorial company that polishes the floor. If it is not clear who created the hazard, the lawyer may suggest that the grocery store file an indemnity cross-claim against the janitorial company.

Implied And Contractual Indemnity

As your lawyer reviews your case, he or she may look for instances in which a contract entitles you to make an indemnity cross-claim. This may happen in the following ways:

  • Express (contractual) indemnity — Your contract with the other party specifically contains language in which the party indemnifies you.
  • Implied (equitable) indemnity — While your contract does not expressly contain indemnifying language, it is drafted in such a way as to imply that if the other party breaches their duty to you, they will bear the liability for the consequences.

Contact Us To Discuss Your Legal Options

The Law Office of Katherine R. Moore serves clients in the Bay Area and elsewhere in California. Call our Redwood City office at 650-399-0752, or use our convenient online form.