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Renowned Seattle Restaurant Group Leads Charge in Lawsuit Against Insurance Company



Our firm has filed a lawsuit against Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company in King County Superior Court on behalf of Ethan Stowell’s restaurant group (ES Restaurant Group). The lawsuit arises from Fireman’s Fund denial of ES Restaurant’s Group’s claim for business income loss coverage arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This lawsuit concerns a carrier that intentionally removed its disease exclusion, but now claims its policy does not cover business income losses caused by a disease—COVID-19,” said Tristan Swanson, ES Restaurant Group’s lead lawyer. “What’s especially concerning is that Fireman’s Fund has likely misrepresented this in every denial across Washington State, given that the company appears to be denying claims by cutting and pasting the names of restaurants into a template response, falsely asserting that a disease exclusion may bar coverage in each one.” Tristan added that “he is proud to be representing a client like ES Restaurant Group; one that is willing to fight a battle which will likely benefit restaurants state-wide.”

Fireman’s Fund, owned by Allianz, is ES Restaurant Groups “all-risks” commercial property insurer.

“The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are being felt across our community,” said ES Restaurant Group CEO and founder Ethan Stowell. “Everyone has been affected and countless businesses are enduring very real hardships. However, that has not stopped ES Restaurant Group from doing the right thing in how we conduct our business and in how we treat people. At this time, we are simply asking for the same thing from all of our business partners; in this case, Fireman’s Fund.”

About Ethan Stowell Restaurants
The restaurant group, founded by Ethan Stowell in 2007, is an award winning Seattle-based network of 18 restaurant brands offering a broad spectrum of cuisine from fine dining to casual wood-fired pizzas. More information is available at

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