The Illinois First District Appellate Court has ruled that Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago cannot force its insurers to cover claims stemming from the building’s contamination of the Chicago River.
In the original 2018 lawsuit, the State of Illinois claimed that the Trump International Hotel & Tower water intake system was emitting pollutants into the river without a permit. In 2021, Continental Casualty, a subsidiary of CNA Financial, filed a lawsuit, alleging Trump’s insurance policy did not cover violations mentioned in the state’s complaint. Pollution exclusions were part of these insurance policies, reportedCrain’s.
The appellate court determined the hot water discharges do not constitute a covered “occurrence” under the insurance contracts. The decision affirms a lower court’s earlier ruling. Last month, the Sierra Club and the nonprofit Friends of the Chicago River announced plans to sue the Trump Organization, alleging the tower’s discharge system violated the federal Clean Water Act.
Jasmine Kilman is Content Director of Connect Commercial Real Estate, covering Chicago and greater Chicagoland, the Midwest, Seattle, and the Pacific Northwest. She covers industry trends, transaction deals, market research, and produces daily news stories.
With experience in marketing and communications for academic nonprofits and corporate clients, including Hearst Media, Hilton, and Coldwell Banker, Kilman has written about commercial real estate, environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG), technology, healthcare, and philanthropy. She was born and raised in California and graduated with a degree in public relations. In her spare time, Kilman enjoys hiking and traveling to new locations with her family.