General Business Insurance Civil Procedure

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Connecticut Court Holds No Cause Of Action Against Independent Adjuster For Negligence

The states are divided over whether an independent adjuster can be sued for negligence by the insured, and no Connecticut appellate court has ever addressed that issue. Last Tuesday, however, one of the state’s federal...more

Do Not Pass Go. Do Not Collect $200?: D&O Insurance—Advance Warning on Fee Advancement

In a recent string of decisions, the Delaware Chancery Court has addressed the scope of the right of Directors and Officers to have their legal expenses paid while governmental investigations or legal proceedings against them...more

Avoiding Gamesmanship in Appointing Appraisal Umpires

Appraisal has long been utilized as a tool for resolution of disputes over the amount of loss at issue in property insurance claims. Unfortunately, the appraisal process has devolved in recent years. What was once considered...more

Court Finds That Follow The Fortunes Doctrine Does Not Apply To Claims Against A Reinsurance Program’s TPA, But Dismisses Suit...

A New York federal district court recently held that the follow the fortunes doctrine does not govern certain claims brought against a third-party administrator of a reinsurance program, but otherwise granted the...more

Triple Threat to Coverage: Third Circuit Departs From Three Fundamental Rules in Applying “Prior Publication” Exclusion

Three well-established rules — (1) that policy exclusions are to be interpreted narrowly, (2) that an insurer has the burden to prove the applicability of an exclusion, and (3) that an insurer has a duty to defend as long as...more

No Escape from Duty to Defend By Escape Clause

Underwriters of Interest Subscribing to Policy Number A15274001 v. ProBuilders Specialty Insurance Company - Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District (October 23, 2015) - The California Fourth Appellate District...more

Second Circuit’s Policy Language Interpretation Leaves Insurer Down in the Dumps

So this dump truck can’t make it through an overpass on I-90; the crash knocks the dump box off the truck and into the road. Five minutes later (or 30 seconds, if you believe some people), along comes Mr. Itzkowitz, with his...more

Insurer’s Action To Arbitrate Stayed In Lieu Of Earlier-Filed State Court Coverage Action

An Illinois federal court recently stayed an insurer’s petition to compel arbitration of a dispute with its policyholder, finding that abstention in favor of an earlier-filed suit involving the parties was appropriate under...more

Stadium Owners Watching Closely To See if Insurer Fumbles Reggie Bush Claim

San Francisco 49ers running back Reggie Bush reportedly intends to sue the city of St. Louis after slipping on a concrete surface behind the St. Louis Rams’ bench during a recent game, injuring his knee and ending his season....more

Insurance Benefit Assignment to Contractors: Not in Texas

In Florida and other states, a post-loss assignment of insurance benefits (or AOB) has become commonplace and a hot-topic issue. The typical scenario is that after suffering a loss, the insured assigns the right to policy...more

Court Lays Out Various Guidelines For Asserting Privilege In Insurance And Reinsurance Related Discovery

The court considered the various privilege assertions of both the insurers (plaintiffs) and the insureds (defendants) in a multi-insurer insurance litigation. In analyzing varying categories of documents, including subsets of...more

Lincoln General Insurance Company Enters Liquidation in Pennsylvania

The Insurance Commissioner of Pennsylvania has placed Lincoln General Insurance Company into liquidation in Pennsylvania. As a result, the Insurance Commissioner as Liquidator takes over the property, business, and affairs of...more

Wall-to-Wall Ads: Florida Court’s Broad Definition of “Advertisement” Expands Scope of Advertising Injury Coverage

“Advertising injury” can be tricky. In theory, the term applies to the type of harm that can be inflicted through advertising media—defamation, disparagement, violation of privacy rights or misappropriation of intellectual...more

Insurers From Coast to Coast Notch Suit Limitation Victories

Over the last several months, courts in Washington, Kansas, and Virginia have awarded victories to carriers asserting a suit limitation defense, and there are three valuable takeaways from the decisions. First, the insurer...more

Laminate Flooring and Chinese Drywall: Where Are We Now?

On March 1, 2015, television news magazine “60 Minutes” aired a report concluding that Chinese-manufactured laminate flooring sold by Lumber Liquidators contained and “off-gassed” formaldehyde at levels exceeding health and...more

Connecticut Federal Court Grants Reinsurer’s Motion For Summary Judgment, Entitling It To Commission Adjustment Payments

In a diversity action arising out of a series of reinsurance agreements, a reinsurer, Odyssey Reinsurance Company, alleged that it was owed sliding scale commission adjustment payments from Cal-Regent Insurance Services...more

Mind The Gaps: Path To Privacy And Cyber Related Insurance Coverage Remains Uncertain

As lawsuits against companies for breach of privacy-related laws and cyber security failures continue to rise, the only thing that is certain is that it is uncertain just how much coverage is out there under commercial...more

Eastern District of New York ultimately arrives at right outcome when interpreting “Employer’s Liability” exclusion in CGL policy

In Hastings Development, LLC v. Evanston Insurance Company, No. 14-cv-6203 (ADS)(AKT) (Oct. 30, 2015), the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York correctly determined that an “Employer’s Liability” exclusion...more

New York Appellate Court Affirms Granting Of Reinsurer’s Motion To Sever

Munich Reinsurance America, Inc., (“Munich”) moved to sever its suit against cedent Utica Mutual Insurance Company (“Utica”) from Utica’s suit against Transatlantic Reinsurance Company. Utica sought enforcement of reinsurance...more

Tennesse Court Upholds Public Policy Against Wagering in STOLI Context

Litigation concerning stranger-originated life insurance (“STOLI”) continues to unfold in state and federal courts across the country. Among other issues, STOLI-related lawsuits often involve disputes concerning the...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending October 30 & November 6, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Eminent Domain: property owners forced to defend against excessive litigation caused by condemning authority entitled to attorneys’ fees: (1) for hours defending excessive litigation, fees should...more

Court Extends Kemper Insurance Company’s Contingent Claims Filing Deadline

On November 2, 2015, the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, entered an order granting a one-year extension of the deadline for filing proof of liquidation of an insured’s contingent claim for losses associated with...more

Maryland General Contractor Wins Coverage Under Subcontractor’s Additional Insured Endorsement; Coverage Not Limited to Vicarious...

An opinion favorable to additional insureds came down last week from the Maryland Court of Special Appeals. In John G. Davis Construction Corp. v. Erie Insurance Exchange, No. 802-2014 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. Oct. 28, 2015), the...more

Depreciation of Labor Class Action - Minnesota Supreme Court Oral Argument

I’ve been following closely a series of class actions around the country alleging that, in calculating the “actual cash value” of property damage under a homeowners or commercial property insurance policy, insurance companies...more

New York Court Holds Public Adjuster Entitled to Fee Even Though Claim Settled After Ten Years Of Litigation

Disputes between the insured and its public adjuster (PA) are frequently contentious and have the unfortunate potential to draw the carrier into litigation. A perfect example is last week’s decision in Public Adj. Bur., Inc....more

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