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Shipwrecks and the Nairobi Convention

What is the Convention all about? The Nairobi International Convention on the Removal of Wrecks 2007 comes into force on 14 April 2015. When the Convention applies, it will impose strict liability and insurance...more

Washington Healthcare Update

This Week: Bipartisan, Bicameral Permanent SGR Fix Introduced... House Budget Committee Advances FY2016 Budget Proposal... National Coverage Determinations Proposed for Removal... HHS Releases Proposed Rules on EHR Incentive...more

Ninth Circuit Rules That Harmless Procedural Violation Does Not Alter Standard of Review

The Ninth Circuit held that a plan administrator’s failure to render a decision on a long-term disability benefits claim within the period mandated by the plan and ERISA did not alter the standard of review that the court...more

NAIC Amps Up Cybersecurity Oversight

The NAIC has begun its efforts to amp up state insurance department oversight of cybersecurity practices with the release of two documents for public comment. The first, entitled Principles for Effective Cybersecurity...more

Evolving Audit Committee Standards for Texas Insurers

Effective January 1, 2010, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) adopted the Annual Financial Reporting Model Regulations (Model Audit Rule), which among other requirements, substantially expanded the...more

IVASS Regulation no 8 of 3 March 2015 - Simplification of procedures

A few days ago, IVASS issued Regulation no. 8 of 3 March 2015 describing the simplified procedures and compliance obligations applying to relationships between enterprises, intermediaries and clients. The document...more

New P&C Insurance Demutualization Regulations: Unknown Unknowns

On February 28, 2015, the Department of Finance released draft regulations under the Insurance Companies Act (Act) providing for a framework for the demutualization process applicable to mutual property and casualty insurance...more

Health Care Update - March 2015 #2

In This Issue: - Senate HELP Begins Innovation for Healthier Americans Hearings - 340B Hearing Postponed; Written Testimonies Shed Light on Agenda - Implementation of the Affordable Care Act -...more

OIG Releases Health Reform Oversight Plan

Last week, while many of us were digging out from one snowstorm and bracing for another, the United States Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) was keeping busy. HHS lawyers were preparing to defend a key...more

Punishing Good Deeds in California

Most state treasurers now demand that life insurers search public databases, such as the Social Security Administration’s Death Master File (DMF), for potential claims. State treasurers similarly require insurers to remit...more

Bad Day for NewDay: CFPB Section 8 Enforcement Continues

On February 10, 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) added another company to its litany of alleged Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (“RESPA”) Section 8 offenders (Michigan Title, PHH Corporation, New...more

California Bans Use of Price Optimization

Yesterday California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones became the latest voice in a growing chorus of state insurance regulators who condemn the use of “Price Optimization” as a mechanism for adjusting property-casualty...more

Insurance Sector - 2014 Year End Review and Forecast for 2015

Fundamental changes and powerful forces are reshaping the insurance industry. These developments are reestablishing the natural order of the financial services sector and redefining the insurance industry’s role in the global...more

Municipal Legal News - Volume 1 Number 1

Major Freedom of Information Act ("FOIA") Amendments - Public Act 563 of 2014 ("Act 563") amends the FOIA to impose a number of new regulations on public bodies. All municipalities will need to review their FOIA...more

DOL Issues Final Rules on Annual Funding Notice for Defined Benefit Plans

The Department of Labor recently issued final regulations implementing the annual funding notice that defined benefit plans are required to provide under Section 101(f) of ERISA. The final regulations are similar to the...more

DOL Investigations: A Shift in Focus

The Issue: During a recent Department of Labor (“DOL”) investigation for a local California employer, we experienced an increased focus by the DOL on plan expenses. While this isn’t necessarily surprising given the increased...more

Former Senior Executives Of Insurance Retailer Fined And Prohibited As A Result Of The Development Of A Sales Strategy That...

In this case report we consider enforcement action taken by the FCA in relation to three former senior executives of a large retail insurance firm (the former Chief Executive, Finance Director and Marketing Director). This...more

The Future of MassHealth: Five Priority Issues for the New Administration

Executive Summary - The past decade marked an era of seismic change in the Massachusetts health care market and one in which the Commonwealth led the nation in coverage and delivery system reform. In 2006,...more

HHS to Audit Hospital Reporting of GPO Payments: GAO Report Suggests Further Scrutiny of GPO Shareback with Hospitals

On November 24, 2014, the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) published a report examining the contracting practices and funding structures of health care group purchasing organizations (“GPOs”) and their potential...more

Insurance Regulator Too 'Aggressive,' Insurers Say

Four insurance companies sued the California Department of Insurance, claiming the agency has become "increasingly aggressive" in its efforts to enforce the state's Unfair Insurance Practices Act....more

Health Care Update - December 2014

In This Issue: - FDA Releases Menu Labeling Rule - Implementation of the Affordable Care Act - Other Federal Regulatory Initiatives - Upcoming Congressional Hearings - Excerpt from FDA...more

New Requirements Regarding Flood Insurance in Massachusetts

On July 23, 2014 , Governor Deval Patrick signed into law “An Act Further Regulating Flood Insurance”, effective November 20, 2014. Links to the Act and to “Frequently Asked Questions” prepared by the Massachusetts Division...more

FIO Focus, No.67 - Hearing on the Impact of International Regulatory Standards

On November 18, 2014, the Housing and Insurance Subcommittee of the House Committee on Financial Services held a hearing on “The Impact of International Regulatory Standards on the Competitiveness of U.S. Insurers, Part II.”...more

Court Rules Disparate Impact Claims Cannot Be Made Under Fair Housing Act

Earlier this week, a federal district court judge struck down a regulation issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which would have allowed for claims of housing discrimination to be based on...more

Do Lawyers Professional Liability Policies fall within the “no prejudice” amendments to New York’s Insurance Law for late notice?

The New York State Insurance Department has issued an ambiguous opinion taking the position that the amendment to Insurance Law §3420(a)(5), changing the “no prejudice” rule, applies to all liability policies, which arguably...more

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