Appeals court earlier this year slashed mall’s insurance payout by $150M
Industry groups and prominent Tennessee businesses are urging the Tennessee Supreme Court to
take up Opry Mills Mall owner Simon Property Group’s appeal of a lower court decision that cut its
insurance payout for a major 2010 flood from $200 million to $50 million.
One group, which includes the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Associated Builders and Contractors, Associated General Contractors, Tennessee Road Builders Association, Chattanooga-
based regional mall owner CBL & Associates and Brentwood-based Tractor Supply Co., filed a brief
supporting the Opry Mills owner earlier this month. Insurance consumer advocacy group United
Policyholders has asked the court for permission to file its own brief supporting Simon Property
After the Tennessee Court of Appeals in January ruled in favor of a group of insurance
companies that held the Opry Mills flood policy, Simon Property Group in March asked the Supreme
Court to hear the case. In reversing an earlier trial court decision, the appeals court determined that
the mall was located in a so-called High Hazard Flood Zone, and its owners were therefore due just a
fraction of the full $200 million in insurance coverage.
The May 2010 flood resulted in the closure of the mall for almost two years.
The business groups, represented by attorneys from Bradley Arant Boult Cummings, argue that “the
insurers and their agent repeatedly and uniformly reassured the insured, its lender, and its partner
that the Opry Mills mall had full $200 million limits for flood damage.”
“Allowing insures to escape liability for promises made in certificates of insurance would be
fundamentally unfair,” the brief continues.
The legal dispute has been ongoing since Simon Property Group, the largest shopping mall operator in
the country, filed suit against the insurance companies just four months after the 2010 flood.