Okla. Supreme Court Rules Against Native American Tribes in COVID-19 Coverage Case

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that two more Native American tribes are not entitled to coverage for economic losses incurred when they temporarily closed their properties during the COVID-19 pandemic because there was no “direct physical loss or damage” of property.

In two Jan. 23 opinions, a court majority found an Oklahoma state judge erred in finding business interruption coverage when the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and Choctaw Nation did not sustain immediate, tangible deprivation or destruction of property.

The majority reasoned that the common usage of the term "damage" is a lesser harm than "loss,” but …


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