General Business Insurance Civil Procedure

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Striking Down Regulation On Replacement Cost Estimates, A California Court Heads Off Policyholder Litigation

Last week, in Association of California Ins. Cos. v. Jones, B238622 (Cal. Ct. App. Apr. 8, 2015), a California appellate court affirmed a decision that invalidated a regulation governing estimates of replacement costs made by...more

District Court Rules On Discovery In Bad Faith Case

In a dispute between the excess and primary liability insurance carriers of a common insured based upon the primary insurer’s alleged breach of the duty to defend the common insured, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern...more

A New Twist in the California Debate Over Allegedly Inadequate Replacement Cost Limits in Homeowners’ Policies

The April 8, 2015 decision of the California Court of Appeals in Ass’n. of Cal. Insurance Companies v. Jones, 2015 WL 1569669, 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 298 (Cal.Ct.App., Apr. 8, 2015) held that the state’s Insurance Commissioner...more

Federal Court Remands Insurance Dispute To State Court Based On Waiver

A New York federal court remanded a reinsurance dispute to state court, based on the defendant’s waiver of its right to remove. Plaintiff R&Q Reinsurance Company (“R&Q”) brought an action against Allianz Insurance Company...more

Court Addresses Honorable Engagement Provision In Arbitration Clause

In First State Insurance Company v. National Cas. Co., 2015 WL 1263147, No. 14-1644 (1st Cir. March 20, 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit (the “Court of Appeals”) affirmed the lower court’s refusal to...more

Claims Made During Policy Period Barred When Arising Out of Facts Disclosed or Required to be Disclosed in Application

In Crown Capital Securities v. Endurance Amer. Specialty Ins. Co. (No. B256241, filed 4/10/15), a California appeals court affirmed summary judgment for a professional liability insurer on a finding that coverage was barred...more

Construction Case Law Update - April 2015 #2

Commercial General Liability Policies; “Injury-in-fact” vs. “Manifestation” as Trigger for Coverage; “Your Work” Exception – A CGL policy’s “Your Work” exclusion precludes coverage for defective installation when no damage...more

Illinois Supreme Court Addresses Duty of Care Owed by Insurance Agents

On March 19, 2015, in its decision in Skaperdas v. Country Cas. Ins. Co., 2015 IL 117021 (Ill. Mar. 19, 2015), the Illinois Supreme Court affirmed an appellate court decision holding that Section 2-2201 of the Illinois Code...more

5th Circuit Vacates Arbitration Award Conducted By Wrong Arbitrator Under Wrong Rules

Let’s say your arbitration agreement calls for arbitration administered by JAMS under JAMS rules, but the arbitrator is independent and applies AAA rules, over one party’s objection.  A new decision from the Fifth Circuit...more

And the Defense Wins

In Banner Life Insurance Co. v. Jacqueline L. Noel, 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 1539 (4th Cir. 2013), aff’g 861 F. Supp. 2d 701 (E.D. Va. 2012), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently affirmed the district court’s...more

Second Circuit Affirms Application Of Illinois Notice/Prejudice Rule In Reinsurance Row

Granite State Insurance Company (“Granite State”) brought an action against Clearwater Insurance Company (“Clearwater”) regarding a dispute over reinsurance claims Granite State made, and which Clearwater denied based on late...more

Court Makes an Unsettling Inference to Find that the Statute of Limitations Bars Claims Arising from a 1997 Northridge Earthquake...

In Britton v. Girardi (No. B249232 – Filed 4/1/2015), the Second Appellate District upheld the trial court’s dismissal due to the statute of limitations based on an inference it drew from a letter attached to the complaint,...more

Texas Court Talks Insurance And Actual Cash Value

When an insured suffers a property loss, the insurance policy defines the parameters of recovery. Typically, a property insurance policy’s default valuation provision for a property loss is the actual cash value of the...more

Hypothetically Speaking, Mr. Insurance Commissioner, There Is No Need To Answer

A recent case pitted two State of Florida agencies involved in insurance regulation against one another, and resulted in a decision by the appellate court that the Insurance Commissioner could not be compelled to appear as a...more

Court Directs Cedents To Indicate Whether They Will Continue To Argue Against The Finality Of An Arbiration Award To Preclude Its...

In a pending dispute in the Southern District of New York arising from a quota share contract of reinsurance between Employers Insurance of Wausau, as reinsurer, and Nutmeg Insurance and Twin City Fire, as cedents, Nutmeg and...more

Squatter’s Warming Fire in Vacant Home Held Not to be Vandalism by Divided California Court

In February, we published a Post about a Florida decision that aligned that state with the clear majority of American courts that have held that the destruction of property by an intentionally set fire is encompassed within...more

Kentucky Court: Depreciating Labor to Get Actual Cash Value Is Like Making the Insured Use a Very Old Roofer With Debilitating...

Surprisingly few states have addressed the question of whether an insurer can depreciate labor – as opposed to materials – to arrive at actual cash value (ACV). ...more

California Insurance Commissioner Lacks Authority to Regulate Formula for Estimating Replacement Cost Value

In Assn. of Cal. Insurance Companies v. Jones ( No. B248622, filed 4/8/15), a California appeals court held that California’s Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones lacked the authority to promulgate California Code of...more

Newman v. Cornerstone - Insurer's Offer of UIM Need Not Specify Its Cost

Newman was injured in a motor vehicle accident for which the at-fault driver carried insufficient insurance to compensate her for her damages. Therefore, she sought UIM coverage from her insurer, Cornerstone. Cornerstone...more

Everest Indemnity Insurance Company v. Rea - Court Addresses Whether Insurance Company’s Consult With Counsel Constitutes Waiver...

Rudolfo Brothers Plastering, Inc. claimed that Everest Indemnity Insurance Company acted in bad faith by entering into a settlement agreement that exhausted the liability coverage of an Owner Controlled Insurance Program...more

Court Affirms Reinsurance Arbitration Award In Favor Of First State Inurance Company And New England Reinsurance Corporation

Phased arbitration proceedings involving First State Insurance Company and New England Reinsuance Corporation against Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company addressed claims arising under numerous reinsurance agreements between...more

Nature Of Reinsurance Relationship Precludes Dismissal Of Negligence Claim Brought By Reinsurer Against Cedent

A federal district court has denied a cedent’s motion to dismiss a negligence claim brought against it by its reinsurer, Old Republic National Title Insurance. The dispute between Old Republic and First American Title arose...more

Vermont Supreme Court Rejects Traditional Environmental Harm Limitation for Pollution Exclusion

In its recent decision in Cincinnati Specialty Underwriters Ins. Co. v. Energy Wise Homes, Inc., 2015 VT 52 (Vt. Apr. 3, 2015), the Supreme Court of Vermont had occasion to consider whether a pollution exclusion is limited to...more

Washington Insurance Law - 2014 Year in Review

Introduction: During the final six months of 2014, Washington judges issued several notable insurance-related decisions. As was the case during the first six months of 2014, many of those decisions were favorable to...more

Court Rules that Damage From Squatter’s Fire is Not Excluded as Vandalism or Malicious Mischief

In Ong v. Fire Insurance Exchange (No. B252773, filed 4/3/15), a California appeals court ruled that a vacancy exclusion limited to damage caused by “vandalism or malicious mischief” did not bar coverage for damage to a...more

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