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Bad Faith Sentinel - April 2014

In This Issue: - Third Circuit Seeks Guidance from Pennsylvania Supreme Court Regarding Whether Insured Tortfeasor May Assign Bad Faith Claim to Injured Third Party - District of Colorado: Insurer Entitled To...more

Queen v. Schultz

Queen v. Schultz - USCA, D.C. Circuit, April 4, 2014 - Defendant Ed Schultz is a radio and television personality currently hosting “The Ed Show” on the MSNBC network. Plaintiff Michael Queen is an NBC employee who...more

Coverage Opinions Remain Privileged in Bad Faith Action Even Where Gist of Recommendation is Set Forth in Letter to Insured

As a matter of first impression, the Supreme Court of West Virginia recently held that coverage opinion letters were protected by the attorney-client privilege even though the insurer subsequently sent correspondence to its...more

California Court Of Appeals: Discrepancy Between Insurer’s Initial Repair Estimate And Actual Cost Of Repairs Did Not Constitute...

Meuser v. Allstate Ins. Co., A136243, 2014 WL 802535 (Cal. Ct. App. Feb. 28, 2014). Court of Appeals of California finds no breach of contract or bad faith where actual cost of repairing fire-damaged home was higher...more

Vermont Federal Court Rules In Favor Of Vermont And Against Alleged Patent Troll In Preliminary Decision

Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell won a major victory in his groundbreaking effort to use state law to crack down on “patent trolls.” In State of Vermont v. MPHJ, LLC, the Vermont federal court has rejected the...more

California Court Holds An Adjuster May Be Personally Liable For Misrepresentations Made To The Insured

Earlier this month, an intermediate level California court rejected arguments that an insurance company’s adjuster owes no independent duty to the policyholders and cannot be liable even for “appalling” misconduct if he is...more

Directors’ Alleged Breach Of Fiduciary Duty Not Subject To Anti-SLAPP Statute

A SLAPP is a strategic lawsuit against public participation. California enacted Code of Civil Procedure Section 425.16 as an antidote to SLAPP suits. In general, a SLAPP is subject to a special motion to strike unless the...more

District of Colorado: Insurer Entitled To Summary Judgment on Bad Faith Claim Where Insured Repeatedly Failed To Provide Requested...

Keeney v. Auto-Owners Ins. Co., No. 13-CV-00796-RPM, 2014 WL 622509 (D. Colo. Feb. 18, 2014) - District Court in Colorado grants defendant Insurer’s Motion for Summary Judgment where Insured’s failure to provide...more

Mergers & Acquisitions Alert: Controlling Stockholder Squeeze-Outs May Be Structured to Achieve Deferential “Business Judgment...

In Kahn v. M&F Worldwide Corp. (Del. Mar. 14, 2014), the Delaware Supreme Court recently decided that a going private transaction sponsored by the controlling stockholder of a Delaware corporation may, under certain...more

Delaware Chancery Court Clarifies Delaware Boards’ Fiduciary Oversight Duties as to Corporate Operations Abroad

In 2013, the Delaware Court of Chancery issued three decisions in which it denied motions to dismiss claims for breach of the duty of oversight (i.e., Caremark claims) asserted against directors of Delaware corporations...more

Properly Analyzing Breach of a NDA - Loftness Specialized Farm Equip., Inc. v. Twiestmeyer

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has explained that under Minnesota law it is inappropriate to apply the test for the tort of misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information when the issue is...more

The Ropes Recap: Mergers & Acquisitions Law News - April 2014

In this issue: - News from the Courts - News from the Regulators - Tax News - Notable Pending Deals - Contributors - Excerpt from News from the Courts: Delaware Court of...more

Real Estate Agents Need To Be Careful About Disclosing Dual Agency

Dual agency is a big deal to real estate agents. It lets them represent both a buyer and a seller in a transaction. Dual agency was the focal point of the Business Court's opinion last week in BDM Investments v. Lenhil,...more

Minnesota Supreme Court Tolls Payment Bond Deadlines for Fraudulent Concealment

On April 2, 2014, the Minnesota Supreme Court confirmed that fraudulent concealment of a cause of action by a principal on a surety bond will toll a contractual limitations period for claims against the surety. The Court’s...more

Georgia District Court Judge Rules that FIRREA Precludes D&O Insurer Declaratory Judgment Actions Against FDIC as Receiver and...

On March 5, 2014, Judge Richard Story in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia issued an order denying Plaintiff OneBeacon Midwest Insurance Company’s (OneBeacon) Motion for Limited...more

The New York Court of Appeals Considers the Consequences of a Liability Insurer’s Breach of the Duty to Defend

What are the consequences of a liability insurer’s breach of the duty to defend its insured against a potentially covered claim? Recent decisions from the New York Court of Appeals highlight differing views nationwide on...more

NC Business Court Stays Arbitration Pending Ruling On Piercing The Veil Claim

The Order in Cold Springs Ventures, LLC v. Gilead Sciences, Inc., 2014 NCBC 10 is a procedural conundrum wrapped up in arbitration issues. The Plaintiffs in the Business Court are the respondents in a separate arbitration...more

“Neither Admit nor Deny” Settlements at the SEC

In January 2012, the SEC announced that it would vary from its well-established practice of settling with defendants and respondents on a neither admit nor deny basis. The change has affected only matters in which defendants...more

Exercising Contractual Rights Can be Risky if it is for an Ulterior Purpose

As I discussed in “Be Cautions When Tempted to Leverage Another into an Agreement,” exerting leverage to force a business partner into settling a dispute could constitute deceptive or unfair acts or practices in violation of...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume IX, Issue 13

In this issue: - SEC Roundtable Discusses Cybersecurity Threats and Protections Against Cyberattacks - Proposed Changes to FINRA Classification of Hybrid Securities for Trade Reporting Purposes - FINRA...more

Securities Update - March 2014

In December 2013, the Staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance issued to Congress its “Report on Review of Disclosure Requirements in Regulation S-K” (the S-K Study) that originally...more

Top franchise cases of 2013

1. In Hanley v. Doctors Express Franchising, LLC, a former franchisee of the Doctors Express franchise system sued Doctors Express, the franchisor, and Rhino 7, a broker involved in the franchise sale, asserting that the...more

Corporate Officers Becoming Liable for Negligent Acts Is Reconsidered

In July 2013, the decision of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) was announced in United States v. Trek Leather, Inc. and Harish Shadadpuri, Case No. 2011-1527 (July 30, 2013). Harish Shadadpuri (Shadadpuri)...more

Frank v. Elgamal, C.A. No. 6120-VCN (Del. Ch. Mar. 10, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

In this memorandum opinion, the Court of Chancery granted in part and denied in part defendants’ motion for summary judgment as to certain claims asserted by a stockholder plaintiff in connection with a merger involving a...more

Auditors’ Liability to Third Parties: An emerging defence – Part I

Interesting policy issues arise when auditors of corporations whose management has fraudulently misrepresented the company’s financial statements find themselves defending claims brought on behalf of the corporation by...more

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