General Business Professional Malpractice

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Georgia Appellate Court Holds Malpractice Coverage Suit Must Be Arbitrated

The Court of Appeals of Georgia recently affirmed a trial court’s ruling compelling arbitration in a malpractice coverage dispute. McLarens Young International Inc. (McLarens) and American Safety Casualty Insurance Company...more

Avoiding the Upsurge in Trust, Probate and Estate Planning Malpractice

The number of lawsuits against trust, probate and estate planning attorneys has significantly increased over the last several years. Today, trust, probate and estate planing attorneys are charged with legal malpractice and...more

NC Business Court Revokes Pro Hac Vice Admission Of Out Of State Lawyer

Judge McGuire came down pretty hard on a Florida attorney admitted pro hac vice (meaning "for this one particular occasion") by another Superior Court Judge, in McCarthy v. Hampton, 2016NCBC 4. He revoked the lawyer's...more

Federal Court Dismisses Insurance Fair Conduct Act Claims

In a rare victory for insurers, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington dismissed Insurance Fair Conduct Act (IFCA) claims against Evanston Insurance Company. Washington’s IFCA provides a statutory...more

NJ Supreme Court Upholds Insurer’s Right to Rescind When Professional Liability Insurance Is Procured by Fraud

On December 1, 2015, in DeMarco v. Stoddard, the New Jersey Supreme Court, in a 5–2 decision, reversed an Appellate Division decision, DeMarco v. Stoddard, 434 N.J. Super. 352 (App Div. 2014), and held in favor of the...more

Settlement Agreement Precludes Consideration of Order Criticizing Attorney Conduct - Tesco Corp. v. Nat’l Oilwell Varco, L.P.

Addressing for the first time the effect of a settlement agreement on an appeal from an order criticizing two attorneys’ conduct, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit concluded that the intervening settlement...more

Health Alert (Australia) - November 2, 2015

In This Issue: -Judgments; Legislation; and Reports -Excerpt from Judgments Australian Capital Territory 29 October 2015 - In the matter of ER (Mental Health and Guardianship and...more

Product Liability Update - October 2015

Massachusetts Federal Court Holds Proof of Testing of Proposed Alternative Design Not Required in Design Defect Claim, Evidence Plaintiff Ignored Defendant’s Warnings Did Not Establish He Was Sole Proximate Cause of Injury on...more

The Duty of Loyalty Lives on in New Jersey

In an interesting decision affirming the ‘old-but-not-forgotten’ principle that an employee owes his first duty of loyalty to her employer, the New Jersey Supreme Court recently affirmed a decision allowing an employer to...more

Health Facilities May Be Insuring Doctors Without Knowing It

A September 29 ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court effectively makes a health facility liable for the professional negligence of a medical staff member who doesn’t have malpractice insurance or who has insurance that...more

Health Alert (Australia) - September 7, 2015

In This Issue: -Judgments; Legislation; and Reports -Excerpt from Judgments Australia. High Court 2 September 2015 - AstraZeneca AB v Apotex Pty Ltd AstraZeneca AB v Watson...more

Whoops - Legal Malpractice Prevention - Enforcing ADR Provisions in Fee Agreements

Attorneys and law practices have been experimenting with strategies to collect unpaid client fees while limiting the risk of malpractice claims. One approach involves the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR)...more

Party Waived Untimely Defense To Arbitration, Notwithstanding Party’s Claim That Counsel Committed Malpractice

The court confirmed an arbitration decision awarding damages in favor of workers compensation insurers against various insured employee-staffing companies. One of the defendant companies contended that it never executed the...more

Summary of California Appellate Decisions -August 2015

Insurance; Duty To Defend; Insurance Coverage; Intentional Acts; Sexual Misconduct - Gonzalez v. Fire Insurance Exchange (2015) 234 Cal.App.4th 1220, 184 Cal.Rptr.3d 394 (WL 960927) - Facts: This is an...more

New York Court Holds Fraudulent Act Exclusion Applicable in LPL Policy

In its recent decision in Lewis & Stanzione v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78259 (N.D.N.Y. June 17, 2015), the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York had occasion to...more

Arizona Reduces Punitive Damages in Insurance Bad Faith Case Again: Arellano v. Primerica Life Insurance

In Arellano v. Primerica Life Insurance Company, 235 Ariz. 371, 332 P.3d 597 (App. 2014), despite finding an insurer’s conduct moderately to highly reprehensible, the Arizona Court of Appeals recently reduced a punitive...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

Mind the Gap! Avoiding Unexpected Gaps in Insurance Programs

No one insurance policy covers all liability risks. Risk managers expect to purchase several types or layers of insurance to cover different types of insurance liabilities, to provide sufficient limits for a catastrophe loss,...more

Part 2: Sienkiewicz v Salisbury Group Ltd – Insurers denial of indemnity upheld

In October 2013, James Baird posted an article following the Federal Court’s decision to join insurers to a proceeding issued by the applicants (trustees Mr and Mrs Sienkiewicz and AT Melville Pty Ltd) against their former...more

Reinsurance Exclusion Bars Coverage For Bad Faith Lawsuit

A federal judge in North Carolina recently examined a reinsurance policy provision excluding loss “resulting from any claim for . . . any actual or alleged lack of good faith or unfair dealing in the handling of any claim or...more

Illinois Supreme Court: Innocent Insured Doctrine? For a Lawyer? (cough)

Illinois State Bar Assoc. Mut. Ins. Co. v. Law Office Of Tuzzolino and Terpinas, the Illinois Supreme Court held that the “innocent insured” doctrine does not protect an innocent prospective insured, if his law partner makes...more

Insurance Review (Australia) - February 2015

In This Issue: - REGULATORY: - The Financial System Inquiry - Insurance Reform In The UK - CYBER: - Top Five Privacy And Cyber Predictions, Trends And Issues Impacting Insurers In 2015 And...more

Melissa Anderson v. Thomas Aul, 2015WI 19 25 (February 25, 2015)

In a significant decision the Wisconsin Supreme Court has held that claims-made-and-reported requirements in claims made policies should be enforced as written. An insured's failure to report a claim during the time required...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Innocent Misrepresentation on Malpractice Renewal Grounds for Rescission

A law firm partner innocently repeats a misrepresentation by one of his or her partners on a renewal form for the firm’s malpractice insurance. Can the misrepresentation be grounds for completely rescinding the policy? On...more

New Jersey Appellate Division Holds that Affidavit of Merit Must be Issued by a Professional within the Same Profession as...

Hill International, Inc. v. Atlantic City Board of Education, 2014 N.J. Super. LEXIS 177 (App. Div. Dec. 30, 2014) - The Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division held that, in order to support of claim of...more

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