General Business Insurance Civil Remedies

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Illinois Appellate Court Affirms a Declaratory Judgment in Favor of the Insurer Where the Underlying Suit Did Not Allege an...

In Westfield Ins. Co. v. West Van Buren, LLC, the Appellate Court of Illinois, affirmed the trial court’s decision holding that the developer, West Van Buren, LLC (“Van Buren”), was not entitled to defense and indemnification...more

Eleventh Circuit Affirms Judgment Notwithstanding the Verdict in UIM Bad Faith Case

On Friday, September 30, 2016, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeal affirmed a renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law that had been granted by the Middle District Court of Florida in a uninsured/underinsured motorist...more

How Appraisal Protects Against Texas Insurance Code Abuse

Insurance practice in Texas has become somewhat rote. Typically, a petition is filed against both an insurance company (that is often not based or incorporated in Texas) and a local adjuster. In addition to a breach of...more

Arbitration Clause Contained Only In “Side” Agreements To Insurance Policies, Enforced In Dispute Over “Retrospective Premiums”

A U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York recently enjoined Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), from proceeding with litigation in California against National Union Fire Insurance Company (NUFIC), related to a...more

11th Circuit Awards Humana Double Damages Under Medicare Secondary Payer Act

Humana Medical Plan, Inc. v. Western Heritage Insurance Co., case number 15-11436. Liability insurers beware, as the 11th Circuit held that Medicare Advantage Organizations (MAO) are entitled to the same rights...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Affirms General Contractor’s Insurance Coverage for Consequential Damages Caused by a Subcontractor’s...

In an important recent decision, New Jersey joined a growing number of states holding that Insurance Services Office’s (ISO) 1986 comprehensive general liability (CGL) policy extends coverage to a property developer faced...more

STOLI Policies Cancelled, Insurers Retain Premium

Two federal appellate courts have affirmed, on different grounds, the cancellation of large life insurance policies that were alleged to be stranger originated life insurance (STOLI), permitting the issuing insurers to retain...more

Florida’s Fifth District Allows Evidence of Prior Sinkhole Insurance Settlement in Subsequent Sinkhole Trial

In Tower Hill Signature Ins. v. Speck, 2016 Fla. App. LEXIS 12167 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 5th Dist. Aug. 12, 2016), the Fifth District found the trial court abused its discretion by not admitting into evidence the amount of a...more

Summary Judgment May Be Appropriate When Insured Fails to Take Reasonable Measures to Prevent Property Damage

Many first party property insurance policies exclude claims for water damage that occurs when the insured premises is left vacant or unoccupied, unless the insured has used reasonable care to prevent such losses. In...more

Delaware Chancery Court Finds That Anti-Suit Injunction Bars Trustee Under Reinsurance Trust Agreement From Pursuing Third-Party...

Freestone Insurance Company is a Delaware-domiciled insurer that has been placed in liquidation. U.S. Bank National Association served as the trustee under a reinsurance trust agreement (the “Trust Agreement”) between...more

Eleventh Circuit’s Liberal Reading of Bonner Mall a Game Changer for Class Actions?

An Eleventh Circuit panel recently vacated two district court orders after sending the parties to mediation, and after the parties’ conditioned settlement on vacatur of the orders. In Hartford Casualty Insurance Company v....more

Don’t Mess with the Texas Prompt Payment of Claims Act: One Court’s Appraisal Result

Virtually all property insurance policies contain an appraisal clause, which outlines the appraisal procedure in broad terms. Those broad terms sometimes do not provide much guidance about the process, or about the effect...more

More Common Sense: Coverage for Collapse Requires More Than an Engineer’s Finding of Substantial Impairment

In February this blog commented on Washington State’s newly-adopted definition of “collapse” in property insurance policies that contain no specific definition of the term. (Observer, February 8, 2016, Common Sense Prevails: ...more

Third Circuit Slams The Door On Coverage For The Cost of Defending Excluded Claims—Then Leaves It Wide Open

An insured corporation settles a class action, and a portion of the settlement pays the plaintiffs’ attorneys. Payments to the class are excluded from coverage under the terms of the corporation’s liability policy. But can...more

Third Parties (Rights Against Insurers) Act 2010 Comes Into Effect Soon

After years of delay, on 1 August 2016, the Third Parties (Rights against Insurers) Act 2010 will be brought into force in the United Kingdom, making it easier for a party with a claim against an insolvent business to bring...more

Subrogation recovery did not violate the made-whole-rule and was not in bad faith per Wisconsin Sup. Ct.

It is highly unusual to find an insurance bad faith case which stems from an insurance company’s subrogation recovery. On July 6th, Wisconsin’s highest court had such a case, reversing the appellate court and holding that...more

Employing Insurance to Protect You From Wage & Hour Suits In Light of Updated Regulations

In 2014, we reported that wage and hour lawsuits—claims in which employees and companies dispute the amount owed to an employee or class of employees for overtime work— had increased 432 percent over the last two decades. ...more

Injunction Enjoining Enforcement of HHS Attestation Rule Affirmed

The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed the District Court’s decision in Central United Life v. Burwell on July 1, 2016. This decision is very significant for those assessing the future strength of, and...more

Defence & Indemnity - June 2016: I. INSURANCE ISSUES

A. Where a party pleads equitable relief (such as rescission, estoppel or relief from forfeiture) with respect to an insurance policy, the claim cannot be heard by a jury Maynard v. Alberta Motor Assn., 2015 ABQB 564,...more

Ask the Public Adjustor: Covering Life with Wisdom*

I’ll come right out and admit it: I was a crasher at last night’s party. Though they helped me bluff my way in, every stitch of clothing I wore was borrowed, and the limo … it’s a long story, but let’s just say Uber. Then I...more

Eighth Circuit to insurers: Settlement evaluation must constantly adapt to litigation developments

A recent decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit taught an insurer a costly lesson about trying to avoid extra-contractual liability: Insurers must constantly reevaluate their settlement position throughout...more

California Supreme Court Holds That Brandt Fees Awarded Post-Trial By A Court Must Be Included In Denominator Of...

On June 9, 2016, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in Nickerson v. Stonebridge Life Insurance Co., holding that so-called Brandt fees should be treated as compensatory damages when calculating the ratio of...more

Florida Court Declines to Apply a Multiplier as to Attorneys’ Fees in a First Party Insurance Coverage Dispute

In Fla. Peninsula Ins. Co. v. Wagner, 2016 Fla. App. LEXIS 8262 (Fla. 2d DCA 2016), the Second District examined whether the trial court properly applied a multiplier as to attorneys’ fees after the insured homeowners...more

The Duty to Follow-up Part II: When The Underlying Litigation Changes

Last month, we discussed the duty to follow-up in the context of an offer to settle made by a tort claimant and how neglect of that duty cost an insurer dearly by converting a claim that could have been settled for $25,000...more

Third Circuit Holds No Estoppel In Light of Reservation of Rights Letters

In its recent decision in Nationwide Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. Shearer, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 9635 (3d Cir. 2016), the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, applying Pennsylvania law, had occasion to consider...more

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