Insurance Civil Remedies

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High Tide for Lapse Cases? New York Federal Court Holds That Investor Lawsuit Is Not Barred by Statute of Limitations

On March 28, 2014, a New York federal court issued an opinion that may have a significant impact on the already increasing number of lapse-related lawsuits in the life insurance industry. In Lebovits v. PHL Variable Insurance...more

Florida, Georgia And Texas Appraisal Update: Is Causation A Coverage Question For The Court Or A Damages Question For The Panel?

In most jurisdictions, underlying coverage issues must be resolved prior to invoking appraisal in a first-party property claim. The question of what constitutes a coverage issue (typically reserved for a court’s judicial...more

Third Circuit Seeks Guidance from Pennsylvania Supreme Court Regarding Whether Insured Tortfeasor May Assign Bad Faith Claim to...

Allstate Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. Wolfe, No. 12-4450 (3d Cir. Feb. 20., 2014) - Third Circuit petitions Supreme Court of Pennsylvania to decide whether an insured tortfeasor can assign his or her statutory bad faith...more

Arbitration Clause In Agreement Between Insured And Reinsurer Held Invalid Under Nebraska Law

A federal district court has held an arbitration clause in a Reinsurance Participation Agreement (RPA) between an insured and a reinsurer invalid and unenforceable under governing state law. The RPA complemented a standing...more

First Circuit Holds That AIG Must Defend Directors and Officers in FDIC Litigation

What you need to know: The United States First Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an insured versus insured exclusion did not exempt AIG from advancing defense costs under a D&O policy in a suit brought...more

Reinsurance Arbitration Dispute Transferred To Venues In Which Arbitrations Were Pending

National Indemnity Company (NICO) sought an injunction in a Nebraska federal district court to prevent Transatlantic Reinsurance Company and its subsidiary (collectively, Transatlantic Re) from commencing arbitration against...more

Court Awards Damages And Prejudgment Interest In Long-Running Retrocession Dispute

Republic Insurance was a fronting company for a syndicate of reinsurers which obtained retrocessional coverage from Group Des Assurance Nationales under LMX quota share contracts over a number of years. As we reported in an...more

The New York Court of Appeals Considers the Consequences of a Liability Insurer’s Breach of the Duty to Defend

What are the consequences of a liability insurer’s breach of the duty to defend its insured against a potentially covered claim? Recent decisions from the New York Court of Appeals highlight differing views nationwide on...more

California Court Holds Offensive Odors Are Not Property Damage

In its recent decision in Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. Mixt Greens, Inc., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39548 (N.D. Cal. March 25, 2014), the United States District Court for the Northern District of California...more

Interrupted by Sandy

In Johnson Gallagher Magliery, LLC v. The Charter Oak Fire Insurance Company, 2014 WL 1041831 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 18, 2014), the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, granting a motion for partial...more

Policy Observer - March 2014

D&O Coverage for Subpoena Response Costs: An Emerging Consensus? Responding to a subpoena can be an expensive proposition. Fortunately, in many instances, a company can call upon its D&O insurer to help defray the...more

Insurance Recovery Law

Insurer Should Have Considered Extrinsic Facts When Determining Whether A Potential for Coverage Existed, Ninth Circuit Concludes - Why it matters: In a fascinating – albeit unpublished – decision from the Ninth...more

Illinois Federal Court Grants Summary Judgment in Favor of Insurer on “Vexatious and Unreasonable” Claim by Insured

In One Place Condominium, LLC v. Travelers Property Casualty Company of America, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33974 (N.D. Ill. March 17, 2014), plaintiffs One Place Condominium LLC, The South Loop Shops LLC, Southblock Development...more

Despite Often Presumed Limitations, Policyholders May Have General Liability Coverage for Supply Chain-Related Breaches of...

The Eighth Circuit recently confirmed that the all-too-common conceptions that breaches of contract and damages that result in recall are never covered by general liability insurance are, in fact, misconceptions. In...more

Rumble in the Construction Defect Jungle

Lately, reading the advance sheets of construction defect cases has been like watching one of the Rocky movies. There’s the punches (owww!). Then there’s the counter-punches (ohhh!). And on and on it goes with blow meeting...more

Lender’s Title Insurance: When Should Courts Measure the Fair Market Value of Property Affected by a Title Defect?*

Title insurance is designed to pay for damages caused by any defects to title that the title company should have discovered but did not. Lender’s title insurance protects lenders who lose money due to a title defect, which...more

Homeowners Beware: Fraud in Claims Process Can Lead to Judicial Sanctions in Bad Faith Action

A federal court for the Southern District of Texas has sanctioned a pro se litigant for making fraudulent misrepresentations to his homeowner’s insurer following a fire, and for bringing a bad faith action against the...more

Additional California Rulings on Right to Repair Act Defense

In August 2013, we reported that Christmas had come early for the California subrogation community due to a recent decision from the Court of Appeals which found that the “Right to Repair Act” (SB 800) did not apply to cases...more

Fifth Circuit Recognizes Compensation Lien In Jones Act Case

In Chenevert v. Travelers Indemnity Co., No. 13-60119 (5th Cir. March 7, 2014), the Fifth Circuit formally recognized the right of an insurer providing and making voluntary payments to an injured employee under the Longshore...more

Insurance Recovery Law - Feb 26, 2014

Fourth Circuit Allows Punitive Damages Against Insurer For Bad Faith Despite Lack Of Actual Damages - Why it matters: A policyholder is not required to prove ascertainable damages to be entitled to an award of...more

Appeals Court Sides With Hospitals, Rejects Health Plan’s Demand for Refund

The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit recently affirmed a Wisconsin district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of two Wisconsin hospitals, ruling the hospitals were not obligated to repay $1.7...more

Utica And Century Ordered To Mandatory Mediation In Reinsurance Dispute

Utica Mutual Insurance Company brought an action in 2013 against Century Indemnity Company (itself and against certain of its named predecessors) for breach of contract and breach of the duty of utmost good faith, as well as...more

Court Holds That ERISA Plaintiff Cannot Claim Equitable Remedies When the Plaintiff Has Adequate Remedies to Recover Plan...

A federal court has ruled that, although a recent U. S. Supreme Court decision expanded the kinds of equitable remedies available to a plaintiff under ERISA § 502(a)(3), those remedies are still unavailable when the ERISA...more

K2-II Update: Insurers’ Breach of Duty Does Not Result in Automatic Liability in New York

In a 4-2 split, the New York Court of Appeals unwound a 2013 ruling that raised significant concern for insurers in denying requests for defense in liability matters. As a result, it is once again the rule in New York that an...more

The Eleventh Circuit Declares That CAFA’s Amount-In-Controversy Requirement Can Be Satisfied In Declaratory Relief Cases

On February 14, 2014, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Class Action Fairness Act’s (CAFA) $5,000,000 amount-in-controversy requirement can be satisfied where the plaintiff seeks only declaratory relief. S....more

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