Civil Remedies Insurance Residential Real Estate

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Florida, Georgia And Texas Appraisal Update: Is Causation A Coverage Question For The Court Or A Damages Question For The Panel?

In most jurisdictions, underlying coverage issues must be resolved prior to invoking appraisal in a first-party property claim. The question of what constitutes a coverage issue (typically reserved for a court’s judicial...more

Rumble in the Construction Defect Jungle

Lately, reading the advance sheets of construction defect cases has been like watching one of the Rocky movies. There’s the punches (owww!). Then there’s the counter-punches (ohhh!). And on and on it goes with blow meeting...more

Lender’s Title Insurance: When Should Courts Measure the Fair Market Value of Property Affected by a Title Defect?*

Title insurance is designed to pay for damages caused by any defects to title that the title company should have discovered but did not. Lender’s title insurance protects lenders who lose money due to a title defect, which...more

Homeowners Beware: Fraud in Claims Process Can Lead to Judicial Sanctions in Bad Faith Action

A federal court for the Southern District of Texas has sanctioned a pro se litigant for making fraudulent misrepresentations to his homeowner’s insurer following a fire, and for bringing a bad faith action against the...more

Additional California Rulings on Right to Repair Act Defense

In August 2013, we reported that Christmas had come early for the California subrogation community due to a recent decision from the Court of Appeals which found that the “Right to Repair Act” (SB 800) did not apply to cases...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Case Law Update: Week Ending February 14, 2014

I. FLORIDA STATE CASES – SARA WITMEYER - Arbitration/Waiver: defendant waived right to arbitration by defending against claim of replevin in court litigation for two years – Gen. Elec. Capital Corp. v. Bio-Mass Tech,...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Case Law Update: Week Ending October 18, 2013

I. FLORIDA STATE CASES – ILAN NIEUCHOWICZ - - Foreclosure: issue of fact concerning authenticity of “original” promissory note precluded summary judgment – AG Beaumont 1, LLC v LSREF2 Oreo, No. 2D12-5873 (Fla. 2d DCA...more

California Court of Appeal Opens the Door for Construction Defect Claims Outside of SB800

On August 28, the California Court of Appeal ruled that SB800 (Civil Code sections 895 through 945.5, the "Right to Repair Act") is not the only remedy for construction defect claims even when those claims fall within the...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Case Law Update: Week Ending July 26, 2013

I. FLORIDA STATE CASES – ILAN NIEUCHOWICZ - Inverse Condemnation: landowner entitled to money damages from state for inverse condemnation resulting from newly enacted law restricting landowner’s use of equipment and...more

California Court Holds That Broker’s Duties to Its Clients Did Not Extend to Loss Payee Investor

In Travelers Property Casualty Company v. Superior Court, 215 Cal.App.4th 561 (2013), the California Court of Appeal held that an investor who obtained ownership of a condominium development and sustained a loss that was not...more

New case affirms broad duty to defend in construction defect case where damage dates unclear

A new case from Oregon deals with a recurring problem in construction defect litigation—the absence of clear dates in the complaint regarding when damage is alleged to have occurred. ...more

Economic Loss Rule Now Applies Only in the Products Liability Context

Upon emphasizing and reaffirming its concern with the over-expansion of the economic loss rule, the Supreme Court of Florida recently rendered a decision in Tiara Condominium Ass’n, Inc. v. Marsh & McLennan Co., Inc....more

Economic Loss Rule Now Applies Only in the Products Liability Context

Upon emphasizing and reaffirming its concern with the over-expansion of the economic loss rule, the Supreme Court of Florida recently rendered a decision in Tiara Condominium Ass’n, Inc. v. Marsh & McLennan Co., Inc....more

New York Appellate Court Rejects MBIA’s Pursuit of Rescissory Damages

On April 2, New York’s First Department appellate court ruled that MBIA Insurance Corporation may not obtain rescissory damages in its breach of contract action against Countrywide because MBIA had freely given up its right...more

Superstorm Sandy Is Causing New York and New Jersey Legislators to Reconsider Passing Legislation that Would Establish a Private...

Policyholders in New York and New Jersey presently have no private right of action against insurance companies for alleged violations of each state’s respective statutory claim handling guidelines – New York’s Unfair Claim...more

The Intersection of Subrogation and Environmental Law — The Ninth Circuit’s Tyranny of Logic over Common Sense

In a decision that exalts casuistry over common sense, the Ninth Circuit recently held that an insurer who reimbursed $2.4 million in CERCLA response costs to its policyholder had no subrogation rights against the potentially...more

Residential Insurance Policy Requiring Claim Against Insurer be Filed in Under 2 Years is Void

This week we discuss the major Indiana Court of Appeals decision, which found that not only is an insurance policy's limitation for bringing a suit against the insurer to less than the statutory period set forth by statute...more

Court of Appeals Rules that Title Companies Owe Duty of Care in Tort when Conducting Title Searches

In the case of 100 Investment Limited Partnership v. Columbia Town Center Title Co., the Maryland Court of Appeals was asked to determine whether a title company owed a tort duty of reasonable care to its customer, the...more

Title Insurers Not Liable For Agent's Negligence

Title insurance companies can enforce exculpatory provisions in title insurance policies that exclude liability for tort claims based on a negligent title search performed by an agent, Maryland's highest court has ruled....more

First Circuit Affirms Pro-Rata Damages Verdict in Boston Gas

What you need to know: The US First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s pro-rata, time-on-the-risk allocation of damages from environmental contamination in the long-running Boston Gas case. The court...more

Bad Faith Sentinel - December 2012

In This Issue: - Florida Court Holds That Insurer’s Claim File, Including Log Notes And Internal Emails, Is Protected By Work Product Protection pages 1 - 2 - Southern District Of Mississippi: Insurer Has Right to...more

Bailey v. Schaaf et al., Supreme Court Docket No. 144055

Amicus Curiae Brief in Bailey v. Schaaf

Attached is the amicus curiae brief I wrote and filed in the Michigan Supreme Court on Friday, November 30, 2012, concerning the issues to be addressed by the Court in the near future. Oral argument has not been set. The...more

A Few Thoughts After “Frankenstorm”

The major impact that Hurricane Sandy had on the East Coast is a good reminder of the importance of the maintenance of sufficient insurance. All condominium projects in Texas (whether they operate under the current Uniform...more

Appraisal Since Johnson – What The Hail Is Going On?

Originally published Dallas Bar Association's Headnotes on October 24, 2012. Local courts have recently seen a dramatic increase in the filing of hail damage actions. Many of these actions are not conventional lawsuits,...more

[NEW CASE ALERT] A California Court Of Appeal Applies Equitable Subrogation To A Missed Deed Of Trust

It’s every title company’s nightmare. In the process of closing a secured real estate transaction, a previously-recorded deed of trust is missed, and now the title insurer is potentially responsible for the loss to the...more

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