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New York Rescission Law Strikes Again: Lessons Learned From the Voiding of Heinz’s Product Contamination Insurance Policy

An increasingly popular tool in the insurer’s toolset is attempted rescission of the policy. This tool is particularly sharp if the law applicable to the construction of the policy is that of New York. Earlier this week, the...more

UK Financial Regulatory Developments - January 2016 #8

PRA bans former Co-op Bank individuals - PRA has prohibited Barry Tootell, former Chief Financial Officer and Chief Executive of the Co-operative Bank Plc (Co-op Bank) and Keith Alderson, former Managing Director of the...more

Insurance Recovery Law - January 2016

Despite Finding Policy Application Misrepresentation, Jury Rules Against Policy Rescission - Why it matters: A federal jury concluded that Starr Surplus Lines Insurance Company did not have a valid basis to rescind the...more

Alabama Acknowledges AAA Rules Authorize Arbitrator To Determine Whether Non-Signatory Is Bound

The Alabama Supreme Court has followed the Eighth Circuit’s lead, concluding that when the parties agree to arbitrate pursuant to the AAA Rules, they have clearly and unmistakably authorized the arbitrator to determine who is...more

Court Holds That Service-Of-Suit Clause Waives Right To Seek Removal

The Northern District of Illinois recently granted a motion to remand filed by an insolvent insurer’s assignee because the removal contravened the forum-selection clauses of the reinsurance agreements at issue. Pine Top...more

For Whom the Contractual Suit Limitation Period Tolls

Virginia’s Supreme Court recently addressed an issue of statutory interpretation that affects whether or under what circumstances a contractual suit limitation provision in an insurance policy may be tolled. In Allstate Prop....more

New York Federal District Court Dismisses Third Party Claim Against Insurance Brokerage Service

In what the court termed a “risk-free reinsurance scheme [that] proved anything but,” a New York federal court dismissed a third-party claim against the insurance brokerage service that put the two parties to the insurance...more

Fourth Circuit Holds Consequential Damages Exclusion Bars $19 Million Fire Loss Claim Case Background

Poyner Spruill represented the defendant pesticide applicator, Industrial Fumigant Company (IFC), in Severn Peanut Co., Inc. v. Industrial Fumigant Co., 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS (4th Cir. Dec. 2, 2015). IFC was sued in the...more

South Carolina Federal Court Grants In Part, Denies In Part, Trustee’s Motion To Dismiss Claims Brought By Fronting Insurer In...

Plaintiff Companion Property and Casualty Insurance Company (“Companion”) brought suit against U.S. Bank National Association (“US Bank”) arising from its role as trustee under various reinsurance collateral trusts that...more

Are Self-Insurers Subject to State Insurance Claim Handling Statutes?

According to the court in Bingham v. Supervalu, Inc., No. 15-1437 (1st Cir. November 13, 2015), the answer is “no.” As the Bingham decision illustrates, however, the answer to this question depends on the self-insurer’s risk...more

Arise and Exclude: Artful Pleading Fails to Circumvent Contractual Liability Exclusion

It’s not uncommon for plaintiffs to couch their pleadings in terms that attempt to avoid exclusions in defendants’ liability coverage. The plaintiffs in Bond Safeguard Ins. Co. v. National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh,...more

Excess Workers’ Compensation And Employers’ Liability Policy Held Not To Be Reinsurance

The United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana recently granted an insurer’s motion for summary judgment, finding that an excess workers’ compensation and employers’ liability policy was not reinsurance...more

Can Insurers Sue for 'Reverse Bad Faith'? Allowing claims would restore strategic balance in policy disputes

The insurance relationship is contractual, but when policyholders claim insurers failed to honor their obligations, they typically invoke the tort of "bad faith." When courts try to explain this anomaly, they cite features of...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

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Update: Weeks Ending November 13 & 20, 2015

REAL PROPERTY UPDATE - Property Damage/Breach of Contract: insurer failed to prove that it provided insured with notification of its right to mediate at the time insured made his claim pursuant to Florida Statutes,...more

Michigan Court Dismisses Cross-Claim as Insurer Not Properly Subject to a Claim for Breach of Fiduciary Duty

In Van Loo v. Cajun Operating Co, No. 14-cv-10604 (E.D. Mich. Sept. 17, 2015), the Eastern District of Michigan, a Sixth Circuit district court, held that the requirement for evidence of insurability was triggered based on...more

Leading Cases on Chapter 93A

Nearly all business disputes in Massachusetts are governed by Chapter 93A. The winning plaintiff under Chapter 93A is entitled to an automatic award of its attorney's fees, and may be awarded up to three times its actual...more

Texas Court: No Prejudice Required to Deny for Late Reporting Under a Claims-Made Policy

This summer in Nicholas Petroleum, Inc. v. Mid-Continent Cas. Co., 2015 WL 4456185, 2015 Tex. App. LEXIS 7489 (Tex.App., Jul. 21, 2015), a Dallas panel of Texas’ intermediate level appellate court rejected policyholder...more

Georgia Court Holds Coverage Triggered for Product Disparagement Claim

In its recent decision in Foliar Nutrients v. Nationwide Agribusiness Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125528 (M.D. Ga. Sept. 21, 2015), the United States District Court for the Middle District of Georgia had occasion to...more

District of Colorado Grants Summary Judgment for Insurer on Bad Faith Claim Arising from Denial of Coverage Under E & O Policy

P&S LLC v. Nat’l Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa., No. 14-cv-00735-LTB-CBS (D. Colo. July 29, 2015). District of Colorado grants summary judgment for insurer on bad faith claim where insurer established that an...more

Southern District of Ohio: No Coverage Equals No Bad Faith

Schmidt v. The Travelers Indem. Co. of Am., No. 1:13-CV-932, 2015 WL 4538118 (S.D. Ohio July 27, 2015). A law firm that lost more than $141,000 in an online scam lost its coverage dispute with its insurer but still tried...more

Court of Appeals of Wisconsin: Insured Must Be “Made Whole” For Total Loss Before Insurer Can Recover Subrogated Funds

Dufour v. Progressive Classic Ins. Co., No. 2014AP157, 2015 WL 4275292 (Wis. Ct. App. July 16, 2015). The Court of Appeals of Wisconsin reverses the Circuit Court for Dodge County and remands for proceedings on damages...more

Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals: Establishing an Arguable Basis for Delay or Denial of a Claim Precludes a Finding of Bad Faith

Dey v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., No. 14-60300, 2015 WL 3772762 (5th Cir. June 17, 2015). Fifth Circuit holds that “pocketbook dispute” between insured and insurer over value of the insured’s claim and insurer’s...more

Eighth Circuit: No Bad Faith Where Insured Failed to Make a Sufficient Demand and Insurer Refused to Entertain Settlement Offer...

Purscell v. Tico Ins. Co., No. 13-2362, 2015 WL 3855253 (8th Cir. June 22, 2015). Court holds it was not bad faith for insurer to pursue investigation into underlying lawsuit before considering settlement...more

Hawaii Supreme Court Holds a Primary Insurer Cannot Gamble with the Excess Insurer’s Money

On June 29, 2015, in responding to a certified question from the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii, the Hawaii Supreme Court held in St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co. v. Liberty Mutual Ins. Co., SCCQ-14-0000727,...more

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