Civil Procedure Insurance

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Arizona Court of Appeals Reverses $1 Million Award of Punitive Damages in Insurance Bad Faith Case for Alleged “Institutional Bad...

In Sobieski v. Am. Standard Ins. Co. of Wisconsin, 2016 WL 5436588 (Ariz.App. Sept. 29, 2016), despite upholding a bad faith judgment for an insurer conducting an unreasonable investigation and denying a claim, the Arizona...more

Estee Lauder Decision Highlights Waiver Argument’s Challenges

Policyholders often seek to challenge an insurer’s denial of coverage on the grounds that the insurer waived a defense relied upon to deny coverage. On September 15, 2016, the Court of Appeals in Estee Lauder Inc. v....more

What Standard Governs the Dismissal of a Relator's Claim for Violation of the False Claims Act's Seal Requirement in an Action...

In the aftermath of the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Cori and Kerri Rigsby accused State Farm Fire and Casualty Company of falsely misclassifying wind damage as flood damage, among other misdeeds, leaving...more

Nationwide Moves for Reconsideration Following Sixth Circuit’s revival of Data Breach Class Action

On September 26, 2016, Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. (“Nationwide”) petitioned the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to reconsider its September 12, 2016 ruling that revived a class action arising out of Nationwide’s 2012 data...more

Understanding How Insurance Policy Conditions Apply When There is an Assignment of Benefits

Florida first-party property insurers have seen a dramatic rise in assigned insurance claims. In the typical scenario, an insured assigns her rights to receive insurance proceeds from a loss to a contractor in return for the...more

A Question of Timing – Social Security Disability Determinations and the Administrative Record

Seyfarth Synopsis: Court excludes evidence of Social Security disability award issued after the final decision issued on plaintiff’s claim for plan disability benefits. The decision accentuates the importance of fighting to...more

Seventh Circuit Holds that Insurers Cannot Challenge Policies for Lack of Insurable Interest

On October 12, 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, in an opinion authored by Judge Richard Posner, affirmed a district court decision finding that securities intermediary U.S. Bank, N.A. is...more

Sixth Circuit: Substantial Risk of Harm and Mitigation Costs Sufficient to Confer Standing in Data Breach Case

On October 12, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit denied a petition for an en banc rehearing of its September 12 decision in Galaria, et al. v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company (Nos. 15-3386/3387). In...more

Court Compels Arbitration To Determine The Arbitrability Of Reinsurance Dispute With Captive Insurance Company

In a suit by an auto body company against a captive insurance company for rescission of certain workers compensation reinsurance participation agreements, for disgorgement of $70,000 paid thereunder, and for fraud, breach of...more

Ohio Court Holds Software Audit Demand Is a Claim Under D&O Policy

In its recent decision in Eighth Floor Promotions v. The Cincinnati Ins. Cos., 2016 Ohio App. LEXIS 4119 (Oct. 11, 2016), the Court of Appeals of Ohio, Third Appellate District, had occasion to consider whether an audit...more

Hurricane Matthew flood claims may not be entirely preempted by federal law

In the wake of Hurricane Matthew and its associated flooding (particularly in North Carolina and South Carolina), a recent case of first impression in the Sixth Circuit may be cited by both damaged businesses and insurers and...more

State-law Based Claims Against Parties Other than the United States Seeking Damages Arising Out of the Procurement of Flood...

Harris v. Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Company, __ F.3d __, 2016 WL 4174381 (6th Cir. Aug. 8, 2016) - Case at a Glance - Plaintiffs purchased a home located in a federal flood zone, but they did not purchase...more

CFPB Single-Director Structure Unconstitutional: CFPB Director Now Serves at President’s Will

A divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled October 11, 2016, that the current structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is unconstitutional. The court concluded...more

D.C. Circuit Delivers a Major Setback to the CFPB

On October 11, the D.C. Circuit issued a major decision holding the structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) unconstitutional and sharply limiting the CFPB’s enforcement powers. The decision granted a...more

Now You See It; Now You Don't: A Sixth Circuit Decision Regarding Reinsurance Agreements

Last week, a court in the Sixth Circuit helped to clarify its position on the discoverability of communications and agreements regarding reinsurance. In doing so, it held that reinsurance agreements themselves are...more

Likelihood of success a prerequisite to insurer's duty to appeal, Mass. court rules

On August 27, 2016, Judge Mitchell Kaplan of the Massachusetts Superior Court for Suffolk County - Business Litigation Session, which handles only complex business litigation matters, issued a decision holding that an...more

Fifth Circuit: If It Ain’t Broke, Not Paying To Fix It Ain’t Bad Faith

Toney v. State Farm Lloyds, Case No. 14-40914, 2016 WL 4784012 (5th Cir. Sept. 13, 2016). After a March 2012 hail storm damaged his home in Mission, Texas, Kenneth Toney (“Toney”) filed a claim with State Farm Lloyds...more

No Breach Of Contract Or Bad Faith As A Matter Of Law Where Defense Counsel Agreed To Accept Rates Paid By Insurer

Feld v. Fireman’s Fund Ins. Co., Case No. 12-1789 (D.D.C. Sept. 13, 2016). In a case where Saul Ewing represented Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company (“FFIC”), the District Court for the District of Columbia granted FFIC’s...more

Dealing with Long-Winded Out-of-Network Provider Nuisance Letters

Over the past couple years, more and more of my clients with self-funded plans have received letters from out-of-network providers appealing denied claims. The letters are usually 20 to 30 pages long, not very specific, and...more

California Supreme Court Leans in Favor of Treating Defense Bills as Privileged Communications

On October 6, the California Supreme Court heard oral argument in Los Angeles Board of Supervisors v. Superior Court, a case that we have blogged about twice in the past because of its possible impact on policyholders...more

Illinois Federal Court Grants Motion To Confirm Arbitration Award For Pre-Hearing Security

We previously reported on this case in our blog dated December 21, 2015. The background of the dispute is as follows. A dispute arose between an insurer and its insured under four written program agreements, each containing...more

Superior Court of Delaware Finds that Late Notice Does Not Defeat Coverage Under D&O Policy

The Superior Court’s Complex Commercial Litigation Division held in Medical Depot, Inc. v. RSUI Indemnity Company that late notice did not preclude coverage in a D&O policy absent prejudice to the insurer. By way of brief...more

In Alabama, Sewage is NOT a Pollutant Falling Within the Pollution Exclusion in a Commercial General Liability Policy

Pollution exclusion clauses are an insurance industry staple and are often contained in commercial general liability insurance policies. While one might think that raw sewage would be considered a pollutant, under current...more

Supreme Court of Delaware Decides Long-Standing Dispute in Viking Pump Action

The Supreme Court of Delaware issued its decision in the long-standing dispute in In re Viking Pump, Inc. and Warren Pumps, LLC. The appeal arose out of several rulings in the Court of Chancery and after a jury trial in the...more

Eleventh Circuit Affirms Judgment Notwithstanding the Verdict in UIM Bad Faith Case

On Friday, September 30, 2016, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed a renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law that had been granted by the Middle District Court of Florida in a uninsured/underinsured motorist...more

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