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Texas Amends Insurance Code In Response To Weather Claims

On May 26, 2017, Texas Governor Greg Abbot signed into law Texas House Bill 1774/Senate Bill 10. The new law makes changes to the Texas Insurance Code that will impact the way in which weather claims are brought and how those...more

Ninth Circuit Upholds Bad Faith Award Despite Issues With Policy Limits Demand

In Madrigal v. Allstate Indemnity Co., Cause No. 16-55830 (9th Cir. June 15, 2017), the Ninth Circuit upheld a jury award assessing $14 million in bad faith damages, even though it was unclear whether the insurer could have...more

Eleventh Circuit Reaffirms There Is No Bad Faith Unless the Settlement Offer Fully Protects the Insured

Recently, the Eleventh Circuit, applying Georgia law, reaffirmed that an insurer cannot be liable for negligently failing to settle a case unless the settlement demand provides protection to the insured against all potential...more

Texas Supreme Court Broadly Defines Successor When Enforcing the Insured v. Insured Exclusion

The Underlying Dispute - Robert Primo (Primo) served as the director and treasurer for a condominium association. Shortly before he resigned from that position, he wrote himself two checks totaling more than $100,000...more

Fifth Circuit Provides Road Map for Review and Trial of Bad Faith Claims in Mississippi

Mississippi essentially has three levels of claim when insurance is at issue: (1) mere breach of contract, allowing recovery of contract damages; (2) breach of contract + no arguable basis for breach, which entitles recovery...more

First Circuit Provides Guidance as to When a Notice of Claim Triggers Policy Obligations

When does receipt of a pre-suit claim notice letter trigger an insurance carrier’s obligation to provide a defense and/or indemnity? In Sanders v. Phoenix Insurance Co., the First Circuit provided some guidance to this...more

Texas Supreme Court to Decide Whether a Policyholder Can Recover Damages When The Carrier Does Not Breach the Policy

According to both the appellant and the appellee, the Texas Supreme Court already decided this issue. Each, of course, finds a different answer. Cause No., 14-0721, USAA Texas Lloyds Co. v. Gail Menchaca, in the Texas...more

Don’t Mess with the Texas Prompt Payment of Claims Act: One Court’s Appraisal Result

Virtually all property insurance policies contain an appraisal clause, which outlines the appraisal procedure in broad terms. Those broad terms sometimes do not provide much guidance about the process, or about the effect...more

When is Rescission Based Upon Material Misrepresentations The Proper Course of Action?

Carriers rely on application representations regarding the existence of potential claims. Sometimes, the carrier learns after the fact that an applicant may not have reported all known potential claims. What can/should the...more

Avoid Inconsistent Communications By “Revolving Door” Adjusters

In CE and CLE courses, we hear all the time that the most often cited reason for a grievance or complaint is lack of communication. This truism provides a useful rule of thumb to avoid bad faith claims. Remember, for most...more

Reservation of Rights Letters Help Avoid Prejudice in the Third Party Context

When discussing bad faith in the third party context, most of the discussion properly centers on the duty to settle a claim. However, other actions taken by a policyholder and carrier can have an impact. The recent case of...more

Texas Rule Change: Supreme Court Holds Loss of Use Damages Are Recoverable Where Property Total Loss

In J & D Towing, LLC v. American Alternative Insurance Corporation, No. 14-0574, 2016 WL 91201 (Tex. Jan. 8, 2016), the Texas Supreme Court considered J & D Towing, LLC’s (“J & D”) claim for loss of use damages under its...more

Supreme Court of Texas Rules Installation of Faulty Product Not Covered by Standard CGL Policy

In U.S. Metals, Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group, Inc., No. 14-0753, 2015 Tex. LEXIS 1081 (Tex. Dec. 4, 2015) the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that installation of a faulty component does not cause physical injury to the...more

Texas Supreme Court Declines Opportunity to Review Appellate Decision Clarifying Insurer’s Settlement Obligations In...

Last year in Patterson, et al. v. Home State County Mut. Ins. Co., 2014 Tex. App. LEXIS 4460, 2014 WL 1676931 (Tex.App., Apr. 24, 2014), the Texas First Court of Appeals (Houston) held that an insurer was not obligated to...more

Sixth Circuit Refuses to Create a Cause of Action for Reverse Bad Faith

In an opinion handed down last week, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals refused to adopt a new cause of action under Kentucky law for a reverse bad faith claim by an insurer against its insured where the Kentucky Supreme...more

Texas Supreme Court Incorporates Limitations From An “Insured Contract” Into GL Policy

In In re Deepwater Horizon, Cause No. 13-0670, Slip Op., Feb. 13, 2015, the Texas Supreme Court held that an allocation of liability found in an “insured contract” would determine the coverage provided to an additional...more

Fifth Circuit Reaffirms the Importance of a Reasonable Claim Investigation Prior to Denial

In Santacruz v. Allstate Texas Lloyds, Inc., 2014 WL 5870429 (Nov. 13, 2014), the 5th Circuit allowed a policyholder to pursue a claim for common law and statutory bad faith even though the policyholder repaired the alleged...more

Texas Court Construes Professional Liability Policy to Require Defense of Law Firm in Fee Dispute

In Shamoun & Norman, LLP v. Ironshore Indemnity, Inc., Cause No. 3:14-1340, In the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas, the federal district court construed a professional liability policy issued by Ironshore to...more

Texas Supreme Court Clarifies Scope and Application of the “Anti-Technicality” Statute

In Greene v. Farmers Insurance Exchange, the Texas Supreme Court clarified the scope and application of § 862.054 of the Texas Insurance Code, the “anti-technicality” statute, holding that the clause would only operate in...more

D&O Carrier Allowed to Recoup Defense and Indemnity Costs After Employees Plead Guilty to Misconduct

In Protection Strategies, Inc. v. Starr Indemnity & Liability Co., the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia allowed an insurer to recoup more than $670,000 in costs paid for the insured first to respond to...more

Florida Court Permits Bad Faith Claim by a Michigan Citizen Against a Michigan Insurer

In Betzdolt v. Auto Club Group Insurance Company, a Michigan resident was allowed to proceed with a bad faith claim against her insurer in Florida, even though the insurer did not sell policies in Florida, did not deliver...more

Alabama Supreme Court Corrects the Perception that Alabama Law Contemplates Two Bad Faith Torts

In Brechbill v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., No. 1111117, ___ So. 3d ___, 2013 WL 5394444, 2013 Ala. LEXIS 126 (Ala. Sept. 27, 2013), the Alabama Supreme Court held that there is only one, as opposed to two, causes of action...more

Texas Supreme Court Revises New Rules for Expedited Trials and Dismissal of Baseless Claims Following End of Public Comment Period

Introduction - Following considerable public comment, the Texas Supreme Court revised and issued final approval of new rules providing for expedited trials and dismissal of baseless claims. Despite pleas from various...more

Texas Looks to “Rejuvenate the Courthouse” With New Rules for Expedited Trial, Permissive Interlocutory Appeal and New “Loser...

Introduction - In 2011, the Texas Legislature passed House Bill 274, directing the Texas Supreme Court to promulgate new rules reducing the expense and delay of litigation. House Bill 274 calls for early “dismissal of...more

Fifth Circuit Rejects Insured’s Efforts to Secure Independent Counsel

On October 15, 2012, the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit – applying Texas law – addressed another Cumis counsel matter. See Coats, Rose, Yale, Ryman & Lee, P.C. v. Navigators Specialty Ins. Co., No....more

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