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Wis. court: Insurance must cover junk fax damages

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MADISON (AP) — A state appeals court says a Milwaukee heating and air conditioning company’s insurance provider is liable for an unsolicited “junk” fax the company sent out.

According to the ruling, Atlas Heating and Sheet Metal Works, Inc., sent a fax advertisement to Isaac Sawyer’s business, A-1 Security Locksmiths, in 2005. Sawyer sued in federal court, alleging Atlas violated the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, cost him paper and toner and violated his privacy.

Sawyer also sued West Bend Mutual Insurance Company, Atlas’ insurance provider, to determine if the insurance company had a duty to defend Atlas. A Milwaukee County judge ruled it did.

The 1st District Court of Appeals upheld that decision Tuesday, saying the fax violated Sawyer’s right to be left alone.

West Bend’s attorney didn’t immediately return a message.