After the Supreme Court of California decided Gray v. Zurich Ins. Co. (supra), liability insurers provided a defense to their insureds in cases involving physical altercations where the insured claims that he or she acted in self-defense. The reasoning employed by the courts to impose a duty to defend is that an injury inflicted in self-defense may not rise to the level of “willful” and “intentional” injury, which is excluded from coverage under the wording of most liability insurance policies or the public policy stated in Section 533 of the California Insurance Code.
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