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Civil Litigation No. 12-03-00026-CV, 5/30/2003. Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS: Allianz Risk Transfer (Bermuda) Limited appeals the trial court’s denial of its special appearance in a suit brought by S.J. Camp & Co. Allianz Bermuda raises one issue on appeal. Camp is a reinsurance intermediary in Emory. In December 1999, National Health Insurance Co. of Grand Prairie contacted Camp regarding NHIC’s reinsurance needs. NHIC and Camp reached an agreement whereby Camp would act as the sole reinsurance intermediary between NHIC, the reinsured, and a reinsurer. Subsequently, Camp began seeking a reinsurer for NHIC, and contacted the Canadian firm of Dion, Durrell + Associates Inc. in Toronto, Ontario. In February 2000, Dion and Camp met with NHIC representatives at the NHIC offices in Grand Prairie to discuss locating a reinsurer for NHIC. Dion eventually brought in Allianz Bermuda as a possible reinsurer for NHIC. On Aug. 1, 2000, NHIC sent a letter to Camp acknowledging that Camp was the only authorized intermediary for obtaining reinsurance for NHIC during 1999, 2000 and 2001. The Aug. 1 letter further stated that Camp was the “broker of record” and that “this broker of record letter extends to Dion, Durrell and Allianz Risk Transfer, Inc.” On Aug. 17, 2000, NHIC and Allianz Bermuda reached an agreement concerning reinsurance. On March 15, 2001, NHIC and Allianz Bermuda signed an annual renewal term reinsurance agreement effective Jan. 1, 2000. Although the contract showed Allianz Bermuda’s address as Hamilton, Bermuda, it further stated that the “claim reserve” under the contract would be established by Texas law. The contract further stated that the Texas Department of Insurance would have regulatory jurisdiction over the reinsurance agreement. Additionally, the contract stated that any disputes between NHIC and Allianz Bermuda would be settled by arbitration hearings to be held in Dallas or such other place as mutually agreed and that “any action to enforce any arbitration award or to compel arbitration shall be brought only in the state courts in the state of Texas, to the exclusion of all other courts.” The contract continued, “The substantive laws of the State of Texas, without regard to its conflict of laws rules, shall govern any action or suit brought to compel any such arbitration or to enforce any award rendered pursuant to such arbitration.” Allianz Bermuda further agreed that if it failed to pay any amount determined to be due pursuant to an arbitration award, it would submit to the jurisdiction of any court of competent jurisdiction within the United States. Finally, the contract stated, “This agreement shall be interpreted in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas” and contained a provision stating that “[t]here is no intermediary associated with this business of this agreement. All reports and remittances are to be made directly between the parties.” HOLDING: Affirmed. Allianz Bermuda filed its motion to transfer venue and original answer in a separate instrument prior to filing its special appearance. When a special appearance contesting the jurisdiction of Texas courts is entered, it must be filed according to the due order of pleadings. When Allianz Bermuda filed its motion to transfer venue and original answer at 5:03 p.m. on Aug. 16, it made its special appearance, filed in a separate instrument one minute later, a nullity. The court holds that Allianz Bermuda has made a general appearance in this suit, thereby waiving its special appearance. Even assuming that Allianz Bermuda had not waived its special appearance, the outcome of the case would not differ. The trial court determined that it had specific jurisdiction over Allianz Bermuda. Specific jurisdiction is established if the defendant’s alleged liability arises from or is related to an activity conducted within the forum. When the defendant is a commercial actor, it is important to determine whether his efforts were purposely directed toward the forum state. Specific jurisdiction is also proper if the cause of action arises from a specific activity in the forum. Here, Allianz Bermuda’s reinsurance contract with NHIC, a Texas corporation, served to sever any contractual obligations NHIC may have had with third-party intermediaries. Camp, a Texas corporation, was such an intermediary. Camp has alleged facts which, if proven, tend to support that Allianz Bermuda was aware of Camp’s reinsurance intermediary contract with NHIC. When it executed the March 15, 2001, reinsurance contract with NHIC, Allianz Bermuda contemplated the possibilities of future legal action in Texas. In so doing, Allianz Bermuda not only brought itself under the jurisdiction of Texas law, but also under the jurisdiction of Texas courts and a Texas regulatory agency. Any legal activity stemming from this contract was heavily laden with Texas interests. The court concludes that Allianz Bermuda had more than sufficient minimum contacts with Texas for any future suits stemming from the contract. The instant case is distinguishable from Malaysia British Assurance, SDN, BHB v. El Paso Reyco Inc., 830 S.W.2d 919 (Tex. 1992). Here, Allianz Bermuda directly contracted with NHIC, a Texas corporation. The insertion of the clause preventing any other reinsurance intermediary in the reinsurance contract, if proven, was purposeful conduct towards Camp, also a Texas corporation. Purposeful conduct by a foreign corporation towards a Texas corporation can establish minimum contacts with Texas. The court holds jurisdiction is allowed by the Texas long-arm statute and that the exercise of specific jurisdiction by Texas courts against Allianz Bermuda in this case meets the federal constitutional requirements of due process. OPINION: Worthen, C.J.; Worthen, C.J., and Griffith, J.

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