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Horvitz & Levy is a solutions-based firm focused on appellate success. We are distinguished by our commitment to responsive service and on-going innovation in the areas of civil appellate litigation, amicus curiae support, and trial strategy consultation.

Our firm history, honors and awards, and locations speak to our collaborative approach and commitment to serving clients as well as the outstanding legal resources we bring to bear.


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Longtime friends Patrick Frake and John King had a custom of greeting each other by trying to strike each other in the groin area. On one occasion, following that custom, Frake struck King in the groin. Though Frake did not intend to injure his friend, injury resulted. King sued Frake, and Frake asked State Farm to defend him under a policy covering Frake’s liability for bodily injury “caused by an occurrence,” which the policy defined as “an accident.” State Farm sought a judicial declaration that it had no duty to defend or indemnify Frake in King’s action. The trial court denied State Farm’s motion for summary judgment, ruling that an insurer owes its insured a defense under an “accident” policy when the facts show that the insured acted deliberately but did not intend the resulting injury. The parties then stipulated to entry of judgment to facilitate an appeal. 

In the Court of Appeal (Second Appellate District, Division Seven), Horvitz & Levy LLP filed an amicus curiae brief on behalf the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel in support of State Farm. Horvitz & Levy argued that a deliberate act is not an accident, even if the resulting injuries are unintended, and that an earlier Court of Appeal opinion to the contrary on which the trial court had relied—State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. Superior Court (2008) 164 Cal.App.4th 317—was wrongly decided and should not be followed. The Court of Appeal agreed, remarking that the earlier opinion was “contradictory to well-established California law.” The Court of Appeal reversed the judgment for Frake and directed entry of judgment for State Farm. Initially, the court did not publish its opinion. Both State Farm and Horvitz & Levy filed requests for publication, which the court granted.