General Business Insurance Civil Procedure

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Court Denies Reconsideration Of Ruling That Reinsurer Must Post Pre-Pleading Security

On April 13, 2016, we reported on Select Insurance Company’s successful motion for pre-pleading security against Excalibur Reinsurance Corp., pursuant to Connecticut law. Excalibur filed a motion for reconsideration, which...more

ERISA: Reviewing What Needs to Be Proved to Establish the Suicide Exclusion

For many reasons, some of the toughest cases to litigate involve the application of the suicide exclusion. There is a growing body of evidence challenging suicide exclusion determinations....more

Colorado Takes A Stand Against Unauthorized Settlements

The “notice-prejudice” rule gives a pass to policyholders who breach the notice or cooperation provisions of their policies, if the breach is found not to have prejudiced the insurer. Sometimes, the late notice does not...more

Will Discovery Unlock Your Claim File? Federal or State Court Jurisdiction Could Make The Difference

Differences between federal court and state court procedure can be important for insurers that find themselves involved in “bad faith” litigation. If a lawsuit alleging extracontractual claims is filed in federal court, or...more

New Jersey Federal Court Confirms Application of Anti-Concurrent Causation Language in Hurricane Sandy Lawsuit

Readers of this blog may note that we have previously discussed the topic of anti-concurrent causation clauses in various jurisdictions around the country. As a quick reminder, an anti-concurrent causation clause is that...more

Pennsylvania Federal Court Remands Litigation Against Broker Back To State Court, Finding That Party Was Not Fraudulently Joined

The background of this case is that Boomerang Recoveries LLC, a reinsurance program review company, investigated Farmers Insurance Company’s reinsurance contracts to identify any premiums Farmers had been overcharged in...more

NY Appellate Court Rules “Blanket Ordinance or Law Coverage” not as Blanket as Insured Hoped

In 1947, some Bedouin shepherd boys were tending their sheep and goats near the ancient settlement of Qumran, near the Dead Sea. One of the boys threw a rock into an opening on the side of a cliff and heard something break. ...more

Defence & Indemnity - April 2016: II. LIABILITY ISSUES

Where an owner consents to possession of a vehicle to the driver, conditions on that consent do not bind third parties who are injured or suffer loss. Fernandes v. Araujo, 2015 ONCA 571 [4179]...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Holds that a Person Violates the Insurance Fraud Statute Even if Insurer is Not Duped Into Paying a...

In the recent case of State of New Jersey v. Robert Goodwin, 224 N.J. 102, 129 A.3d 316 (N.J. 2016), the Supreme Court of New Jersey held that a person violates the insurance fraud statute, N.J.S.A. 2C:21-4.6(a), even if he...more

Federal Courts Compels Arbitration Of Captive Insurance Dispute

Plaintiffs Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. And Capstone Associated Services (Wyoming), Limited Partnership (collectively, “Capstone”) brought suit against various defendants concerning the use of and rights to certain...more

FINRA Issues Largest Fine Regarding Variable Annuities Contracts

On May 3, 2016, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority announced that MetLife Securities, Inc. agreed to pay $25 million to settle allegations that the company misled its customers in tens of thousands of variable...more

An Injunction By Another Name May Still Immediately Be Appealed

The Third Circuit recently reaffirmed its authority to hear appeals from district court interlocutory orders that grant prospective equitable relief under 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1), even where injunctive relief had not expressly...more

Illinois Federal Court Transfers “Late Notice” Reinsurance Dispute To Pennsylvania

R&Q Reinsurance Company issued a facultative reinsurance certificate to St. Paul Fire & Marine Insurance Company, which reinsured a policy issued by St. Paul to Walter E. Campbell, Co. The broker who placed the certificate...more

Insurers Gain Additional Dismissals in the Florida Auto Body Action

In early 2014, a group of Florida auto body shops sued the leading auto insurers in their state, alleging that the insurers had conspired to suppress the amounts the auto body shops received in reimbursement rates. The case,...more

Court Holds that Insurer is Liable for Contractual Prevailing Party Attorney’s Fees Following Unsuccessful Defense Fee...

In Hearn Pacific v. Second Generation Roofing (no. A142203, filed 5/2/16), a California Court of Appeal held that despite prosecuting an indemnity action against a subcontractor for reimbursement of defense costs in the name...more

Basic-Supplemental Life Insurance Plan Pricing Structure Upheld in ERISA Class Action

An employee benefit plan that includes an alleged subsidization component for its basic and supplemental options is neither prohibited by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) nor a violation of the plan...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

NY High Court’s ‘All Sums’ Allocation Ruling in Viking Pump is a Game Changer

On May 3, 2016, New York’s high court took a giant step forward in protecting policyholders facing latent injury claims, allowing them to avoid multiple deductibles, retentions and insolvent coverage. In the Matter of Viking...more

New York’s Highest Court Rules in Favor of “All Sums” and Vertical Attachment in Certified Question from Delaware Supreme Court

In the recent decision of Viking Pump, Inc., et al. v. TIG Insurance Co., et al., 2016 N.Y. LEXIS 1018 (N.Y. May 3, 2016), the New York Court of Appeals (New York’s highest court), on questions certified by the Delaware...more

Court Confirms Arbitration Award Relating To Three Arbitration Agreements And Orders Certain Documents Unsealed

The court confirmed a final arbitration award in favor of the Petitioner, Employers Insurance Company of Wausau (“Wausau”), pursuant to Section 9 of the Federal Arbitration Action (FAA). Wausau and Ace Property and Casualty...more

Eighth Circuit Holds Insureds’ Miller-Shugart Agreement Breached Policy’s Cooperation Clause

In its recent decision in American Family Mut. Ins. Co. v. Donaldson, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7499 (8th Cir. Apr. 26, 2016), the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, applying Minnesota law, had occasion to...more

Policyholder Takeaways From Portal

In a solid victory for policyholders, the Fourth Circuit upheld coverage last week for a potential data breach incident involving confidential medical records. The case is The Travelers Indemnity Co. of America v. Portal...more

Colorado Supreme Court: Insurers Need Not Show Prejudice to Enforce No-Voluntary-Payments Provision of Insurance Policy

On April 25, 2016, the Colorado Supreme Court overturned a decision by the Colorado Court of Appeals and Colorado District Court in what is believed to be a seminal victory for insurers. In Travelers Prop. Cas. Co. of Am. v....more

Sloppy Claims Handling Exposes Insurer to Bad Faith Claims

A Geico insured, with a $10,000/$20,000 liability policy, was involved in a three-car collision resulting in the death and serious injury of two occupants in one of the vehicles. The insured reported the accident to Geico the...more

Tenth Circuit Reverses UM/UIM Coverage Notification Class Certification

The named plaintiff in Soseeah v. Sentry Insurance had a Sentry auto policy. She declined UM/UIM coverage when she initially purchased her policy, and renewed annually thereafter. In 2010, the New Mexico Supreme Court held,...more

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