General Business Insurance

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Attorneys’ Fees and Prosecuting Bad Faith/UTPA Cases

Attorneys who litigate common law bad faith and Unfair Trade Practices Act claims are well aware that insureds who substantially prevail in an underlying contract action for insurance proceeds are entitled to an award of...more

Western District of Texas: An Expert Must Base a Determination of Bad Faith on the Facts Available to the Insurer When it Acted

Falcon v. State Farm Lloyds, No. 1:12-CV-491-DAE, 2014 WL 2711849 (W.D. Tex. June 16, 2014) - The Western District of Texas finds that a policyholder’s expert witness is not qualified to opine when he does not...more

Argument That Rain Alone Can’t Cause a Flood “Would be News to Noah” Says a California Court

Last month an appellate court in California looked to the Bible, citing the Book of Genesis when rejecting the argument that an inundation caused solely by heavy rain was not an excluded flood. The opinion was handed down in...more

Harsh Justice

Concerned that its own decision might have "the potential to conflict" with that of the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, a Pennsylvania federal court relied on the primary jurisdiction doctrine to dismiss a putative class...more

At the Crossroads - Brand integration deals involve copyright, trademark, and insurance considerations

At the crossroads of Hollywood Boulevard and Madison Avenue, a variety of legal and business issues must be considered and addressed in order to set the stage for a successful brand integration deal. In the historical...more

Rules Will Allow Issuance of Longevity Insurance in Retirement Plans

On July 1, the U.S. Department of the Treasury (Treasury) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final rules excluding qualifying longevity annuity contracts (QLACs) from the required minimum distribution rules (RMD...more

Eleventh Circuit: Excess Insurer, Like All Florida Bad Faith Claimants, Must Prove Causation to Succeed on Bad Faith Claim Against...

Westchester Fire Insurance Co. v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co., No. 13-12932, 2014 WL 2766764 (11th Cir. Jun. 19, 2014) - The Eleventh Circuit finds that a primary insurer did not act in bad faith by failing to inform...more

Florida Jury Rejects Foreign Insurer’s Claims

A Florida jury rejected all claims made by Instituto Nacional de Seguros (“INS”), a Costa Rican insurer, against two reinsurance brokers, Hemispheric Reinsurance Group, LLC and Howden Insurance Brokers, Ltd. As previously...more

Why Texas Insurers Need To Report Fraudulent Hail Claims

In Amarillo, Texas, with clipboard, camera and marking chalk in hand, a seasoned insurance company adjuster climbs his ladder onto the roof of an apartment building. He’s looking for hail damage following a recent hailstorm...more

Regulators Target Insurance Company Acquisitions by Private Equity Funds

Private equity firms and hedge funds have stepped up efforts to acquire insurance companies in recent years. This has prompted regulators to increasingly air their own unease with the risks they perceive associated with such...more

First tranche of FOFA reforms underway

A number of the government’s FOFA reforms commenced on 1 July 2014 by way of the Corporations Amendment (Streamlining Future of Financial Advice) Regulation. These changes include: - Removal of ‘opt-in’...more

New York Court: Storm Surge is a Species of Excluded Flood

One of the most litigated issues in the Gulf States in the wake of Hurricane Katrina was whether flood exclusions bar coverage for loss by storm surge. The courts ultimately decided that the answer was yes....more

The Alabama Supreme Court Changes Its Mind on Coverage Under CGL Policy

Last September the Alabama Supreme Court issued an opinion addressing the applicability of the “own work” exclusion to claims against a contractor for defective construction. However, on March 28, 2014, the Alabama Supreme...more

California Insurers Asked to Submit Diversity Information About Boards of Directors

The California Department of Insurance (“CDI”) has issued a notification to insurers with 2013 written premiums of $100 million or more in California to complete and submit the CDI’s Governing Board Diversity Survey....more

Amlin v Austcorp – It’s all in the wording

In Amlin Corporate Member Ltd v Austcorp Project No 20 Pty Limited [2014] FCAFC 78, the Full Court of the Federal Court rejected the insurers’ argument that certain policies did not respond because the claim was made before...more

On the Road With Autonomous Vehicles and the Insurance Industry, Issue No. 2

State and Federal Regulations Pertaining to Autonomous Vehicles - While autonomous vehicles (AVs) are not yet a regular fixture on the nation’s roadways, policymakers, legislators and regulators have started to...more

Federal Court Undresses Urban Outfitters in Personal and Advertising Injury Coverage Dispute

In OneBeacon America Ins. Co. v. Urban Outfitters Inc., 2014 WL 2011494 (E.D.Pa. 2014), the Eastern District of Pennsylvania analyzed the application of “personal and advertising injury” coverage to alleged violations of...more

Insurance Recovery Law - July 2014

Second Circuit: Insurer Must Defend Where Factual Allegations Create a Possibility of Coverage - Why it matters: In a recent pro-policyholder decision, the Second Circuit, applying New York law, reminded...more

Who pays when the authorities come calling? Syracuse Univ. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, P.A.

With the seemingly endless stream of federal and state investigations implicating institutions of higher education, a recent New York decision offers a glimmer of hope to those schools that find themselves in the cross-hairs....more

Rector Report on reforming reserve financing transactions: much work remains – 6 developments

On June 30, 2014, the NAIC Principle-Based Reserving Implementation (EX) Task Force (PBR Task Force) held a conference call to discuss comments to the modified recommendations to the report issued by Rector & Associates, Inc....more

Policyholders Fight to Preserve Precedent But Court Limits Coverage For Implied Disparagement

On June 12, 2014, the California Supreme Court, in Hartford Casualty Ins. Co. v. Swift Distribution Inc. 59 Cal. 4th 277 (2014), issued its long awaited opinion affirming an appeal of a ruling that at first blush appeared to...more

New York Court Finds Delay In Completion Losses Are Subject To Flood Annual Aggregate Limit

In El-Ad 250 West LLC v. Zurich American Ins. Co., 2014 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 2838 (June 27, 2014), a New York court analyzed the application of various provisions contained in a Builders Risk Insurance Policy (the “Policy”)...more

California Supreme Court Refines the Tort of Commercial Disparagement

On June 12, 2014, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in the closely watched case of Hartford Casualty Insurance v. Swift Distribution, Inc., S207172. I reported on the Court of Appeals decision last year on...more

Insurance Antitrust Legal News - July 2014 • Volume 3, Number 4

In This Issue: - COURT DENIES BLUES’ MOTION TO DISMISS IN RE BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD ANTITRUST LITIGATION (MDL 2406): On June 18, United States District Court Judge David Proctor (Northern District of Alabama)...more

Insurance Coverage – Personal & Advertising Injury – Trade Disparagement

Hartford Casualty Insurance Co. v Swift Distribution, Inc. - California Supreme Court (June 12, 2014) - Commercial liability policies provide coverage for “personal and advertising injury.” This term typically...more

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